Women’s basketball loses to YSU 79-74 in close game

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Sophie Hume

Women’s basketball comes close to Youngstown State, losing 79-74 on Thursday, Jan. 16.

Grant Richards, Staff Reporter

On Thursday, Jan. 16, the Oakland University Golden Grizzlies welcomed the Youngstown State Penguins to the O’rena. Coming in, the game held standings implications as the victor of the matchup would find themselves in third place in the Horizon League.

The game started close and stayed that way for a majority of the game, although Youngstown State eventually pulled away to win the game, 79-74.

“I thought we didn’t come out from the start and execute like Oakland basketball,” Acting Head Coach Ke’Sha Blanton told GrizzVision. “We tried to play late in the game but you can’t try, in this league, to show up in the fourth quarter. We just have to be better at what we do.”

With the loss, Oakland fell to 8-9 (3-3 in Horizon League) while Youngstown State improved to 10-7 (3-3 in Horizon League). 

In the first half, the Golden Grizzlies consistently got to the basket, taking shots close to the rim. Despite not all the bounces going their way, something must be said for the Grizzlies’ ability to get to the painted area.

The team got to the free throw line 31 times, making 24 of their foul shots, shooting 77%. 

Oakland bumped into Youngstown State on the wrong day, as the Penguins shot an above-average 53% from 3-point range. The Penguins would shoot 8-15 from behind the arc while the Golden Grizzlies struggled to get things going and shot 4-17 under the same criteria.

Offensively, the Golden Grizzlies were led by Jalisha Terry and Kahlaijah Dean, scoring 18 and 15, respectively. Oakland’s two scoring leaders led momentum swings and slowed down the Penguins’ attempts at pulling away primarily through great ball control, as the pair would each record a lone turnover. 

Freshman guard Breanne Beatty led the Grizzlies in rebounds with eight, including two offensive boards, while Brianna Breedy would lead the team with five assists. Breedy was also one of the four Grizzlies to score in double digits. 

Despite the large difference in shooting percentages, Oakland finished the game ahead in all other categories, showing that things may have been different if Youngstown State was not hitting more than half of their 3-point shots. 

Looking ahead with 11 games left in the regular season, the Grizzlies have a pretty even split between home and away games. The team does get to finish its season with the final two games coming at home against Wright State and Northern Kentucky, two teams also doing their best to stick around for the entirety of the race for the Horizon League. 

The women’s basketball goes on a two-game road trip against NKU and Wright State before returning home on Saturday, Feb. 1 to face their rival, the University of Detroit Mercy Titans.