SPORTS digest

YSU soccer team falls to Wright State


The Youngstown State women’s soccer team dropped its Horizon League opener to Wright State, 4-0, on Friday night at Alumni Field.

Wright State (5-4, 1-0) scored a pair of goals in each half and outshot the Penguins, 17-8, and had 11 shots on goal to YSU’s one.

Sophomore Betty Anane led the Penguins with three total shots and goalkeeper Kylee Moffett made six saves.

The Penguins (4-5, 0-1) return home to host Duquesne in their final non-league match Sunday at 3 p.m.

Strong defense lifts Penguins to sweep


Lauren Blanco had 24 digs and several other Penguins had impressive performances as the Youngstown State volleyball team swept Tennessee Tech on Friday at the Blue/Gold Invitational. The set scores were 25-15, 25-20, 25-17 as YSU finished day one of Toledo’s tournament with a split.

In addition to Blanco’s 24 digs, the Penguins used 11 blocks to hold the Golden Eagles to an .016 attack percentage for the match.

Sarah Varcolla was in on nine of those blocks, finishing with three solos and six assists. Sam Brown was the top attacker with 10 kills, and Morgan Tippie finished with nine kills in just 15 attempts.

Blanco’s 24 digs were the second-most by a Penguin in a three-set match since rally scoring began in 2001.

Shealene Little led Tennessee Tech with a match-high 11 kills.

Although the Penguins won by a comfortable final margin in all three sets, the match featured 23 ties and 10 lead changes.

The margin wasn’t more than one for either team in the opening set until Youngstown State scored 10 straight points on Dana Borsz’s serve to go up 22-11. TTU built a 10-7 lead in the second set before another big run, an 11-3 spurt, allowed the Penguins to go up 18-13. The Penguins led by at least three the rest of the set and finished the set with six blocks. Blanco had 12 of her digs in the third set as the Penguins held Tennessee Tech to five kills.

Youngstown State will conclude non-conference play on Saturday against Toledo at 3 p.m.

Defending champ wins Truck race


Johnny Sauter took the checkered flag. Christopher Bell held a trophy.

Ben Rhodes was the real big winner at Chicagoland.

Sauter won the NASCAR Truck Series race Friday night at Chicagoland Speedway and heads into the playoffs trying to win his second straight series championship.

“This is what we needed,” he said. “This is the momentum, this is the shot in the arm.”

Rhodes overcame a penalty on pit road that dropped him a lap back to finish sixth, which was just good enough to take the final playoff spot over Ryan Truex on a tiebreaker. Rhodes claimed the only open spot in the eight-driver field headed into the Chicagoland cutoff race.

“They gave me the [playoff] hat and I’m like, ‘Are you sure this is ours?’ They said we were tied and we got the tiebreaker,” Rhodes said. “I can’t believe it. I’m glad we’re in. Overall, everything worked out for us.”

Truex, the younger brother of Cup star Martin Truex Jr., started on the pole and led 30 laps.

“We did everything we could do besides win,” Truex said.

IOC is grappling with Russian doping

LIMA, Peru

The raw feelings created by the Russian doping scandal spilled onto the floor and into the hallways of the International Olympic Committee meetings Friday, with less than five months until the Winter Games and still no decisions made about the fate of the country’s athletes.

IOC members received updates on two investigations that will eventually determine Russia’s status: One on whether there was a state-sponsored doping program in the country, the other on the individual cases of athletes who were implicated in the scandal at the Sochi Games in 2014.

Staff/wire report

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