Posts Tagged ‘Tieara Jones’
The Youngstown State women’s basketball team will play its final regular season game at Beeghly Center on Saturday against No. 11/12 Green Bay. Tipoff against the Phoenix is set for 2 p.m., and the game will be broadcast live on 570 WKBN and the Horizon League Network. The Penguins will salute seniors Tieara Jones (above), Kenya Middlebrooks and Macey Nortey prior to the game. YSU is coming off a 76-71 home loss to Milwaukee, and Green Bay beat Cleveland State 90-59 on Thursday.
Four of YSU’s last five Horizon League losses have been by five points or fewer. One was in overtime, and another was by a go-ahead 3-pointer with 2.3 seconds left. YSU is averaging 10.8 3-pointers in Horizon League play and 9.4 per game overall. The Penguins rank fifth in the nation in 3-pointers per game and have already broken the school record for 3-pointers in a season. Horizon League Preseason Player of the Year Brandi Brown is averaging 18.0 points and 7.9 rebounds in league play. She ranks ninth in YSU history in points and sixth in rebounds.
Green Bay has won 14 straight games against Youngstown State and is 26-1 all time against the Penguins. The Phoenix won the first 12 meetings from 1993 to 2005, and YSU’s lone win came at Green Bay when the Phoenix was ranked 23rd in the country on Feb. 19, 2005 (60-56). YSU is 0-12 at Beeghly Center against Green Bay with an overtime loss in 2004 and a two-point setback in 2004.
Tipoff is set for 2 p.m.
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Coming off of a Thanksgiving weekend road trip, Youngstown State returned to the Beeghly Center and showed no sign of any road fatigue. The Penguins seized an early lead and coasted to a 80-55 victory over MAC-opponent, Western Michigan to go to 4-3 on the season. Last season, the Penguins put up a total of six wins. To have four in seven games says a lot about just how far the program has moved forward in such a short time.
The win was the first for YSU at home this season. It was also the first time a Lady Penguins team has won by more than 20 points since 2006, when they defeated Buffalo by 34.
Youngstown State never trailed in the game. In the first half, they had a lead as big as 13 points with 7:52 until the break. The most impressive part about the first half was that the Penguins scored 30 points and Brandi Brown only had two of them. The knock against the Penguins going into this season (picked to finish 10th out of 10 teams), was that there was no balance around Brown. Those same voters then turned around and elected Brown as the Horizon League Preseason Player of The Year. The fact that the Lady Penguins could account for 28 points in a half without Brown disqualifies all of the preseason inaccuracies and negative speculation of the league voters.
In the first half, Monica Touvelle and Liz Hornberger had six points each. Tieara Jones and Devan Matkin had four each, and Macey Nortey and Heidi Schlegel had three each – pretty balanced scoring. Brown did make her presence known with eight rebounds.
Brown (above), who played most of the game with her left nostril stuffed full of gauze, was used sparingly in the second half. She scored six points in the first five minutes of the second half and finished the game with 12 points and 14 rebounds in just 30 minutes. It didn’t seem like a double-double, but the numbers don’t lie.
“Last year, it was pretty much as Brandi goes, this team goes”, remarked Coach Bob Boldon. ”We play better when we play more balanced. With all of the attention on Brandi, it is nice to see the other players step up. We have played good offensive games, and we have played good defensive games. This was the first time this year we had both.”
With 9:10 left in the game, Youngstown State increased their lead to 61-34 on a couple of threes by Schlegel. The Penguins finished with 80 balanced points.
“I was really happy that we played so well as a team”, said Schlegel. ”We had four players in double figures and we are playing as a team rather than individuals. Off the floor, we are really gelling as a team and that is helping us on the court.”
The Penguins got 15 points out of Schlegel. It is nice to see her playing instead of sitting, she adds another dimension and plays bigger than her size. Nortey had a very solid night finishing the game with 11 points and 6 assists, was 7-9 from the free throw line, 2-3 from the floor, had three steals, and even gathered a rebound.
Brown and Nortey, native Californians, recently traveled home to play a couple of games over the holiday weekend. Sports information director for basketball, John Vogel, talked about the trip and spending time with both families.
“It was a very rewarding Thanksgiving weekend on the road”, commented Vogel. We spent tome with both Macey and Brandi’s families and some of the other parents made the trip. It was nice to see that kind of support that far away from home and the players enjoyed it as much as the parents who made the trip.”
The Penguins welcome Bowling Green as part of a doubleheader on December 6 at Beeghly Center. Tipoff for that game is at 5:15.
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The Youngstown State University Lady Penguins took the floor at home for the first time this season. Playing in their fourth game of the year, and coming in with a 2-1 record (33% of last years win total), the Penguins fell to American University of the Patriot League, 48-41. It was a struggle on offense for the ‘Guins from start to finish.
“It is early in the year and the offense we run takes time”, said Coach Bob Boldon. “Nobody is more frustrated than me. The only thing we didn’t miss was a half court shot. If you are going to compete and win games against good teams, you have to shoot better.”
In the first half, American raced out to an eleven point lead with seven minutes to play. Youngstown State cut the lead back to five points by intermission and trailed 25-20. Brandi Brown, the Horizon League Preseason Player of The Year, and Devan Matkin each scored six for the Penguins in the opening stanza.
In the second half, the Penguins reeled off the first five points to make the score 26-25. The home team surged ahead at the 13:11 mark of the second half, taking a 28-27 lead, their first since it was 2-0 a minute into the game. Tieara Jones got an offensive rebound and battled through three Eagles to get the lead for the Penguins. At the 10:31 mark, Monica Touvelle hit a three to open a two-point lead for YSU.
The Penguins really struggled on offense, shooting 27.8% from the floor, 18.5% from three, and 50% from the line.
“Defensively, we are getting a little better each game. Offensively, we seem to be getting worse each game”, noted Boldon. ”We were swapping four players at a time because we are out of shape. I do like our depth, it gives us the freedom to make more moves, and we will continue to play a lot of people.
With YSU trailing 36-35 and 5:44 left in the game, Heidi Schlegel was fouled on a steal but missed both of the free throws. To that point in the game, the ‘Guins were just 2-8 from the charity stripe. Brown hit a shot with 3:40 left in the game to give the Penguins a one point lead. Lisa Strack went to the line for American and hit both ends of the one-and-one to put the Eagles back in front by a point.
Dobbs connected for three to stretch the Eagles lead to 41-37 with 2:16 left in the contest. Kenya Middlebrooks got to the line and hit a pair of free throws to cut the Eagles lead to two at 41-39 with 1:34 remaining. Arron Zimmerman then hit a three-pointer to hoist American into a five point lead with 1:14 left to go.
Brown finished the game with 14 points, one short of the 1,000 point career mark, and 9 rebounds for the Penguins (2-2). Matkin and Middlebrooks finished with six points each. The Penguins committed 21 turnovers in the loss.
Dobbs gathered 14 points for the Eagles. Stephanie Anya gathered 10 rebounds. The Eagles had 25 turnovers, but the Penguins only scored 15 points off of those chances.
The Penguins head west to compete in a holiday tournament, which Boldon addressed with mixed emotions. ”It is nice in the sense that Brandi and Macey will get a chance to play in front of their families. Obviously, I would rather spend the holidays with my family at home, but it is nice to allow their families to see them play.”
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Youngstown State’s Kenya Middlebrooks made two free throws with 9.8 seconds remaining to lift the Penguins to a 57-56, come-from-behind win at Bucknell on Wednesday evening at Sojka Pavilion.
The Penguins trailed by 17 early in the second half and were down 56-48 with two minutes left. Brandi Brown‘s three-point play cut the margin to five, and, after a Bucknell turnover on a five-second violation, another three-point play by Middlebrooks made the score 56-54 with 1:53 left.
Brown went 1-for-2 from the line with 14.4 seconds left, and Tieara Jones grabbed the offensive rebound to keep possession. Middlebrooks was fouled on a jumper, and she sank both free throws to give YSU its first lead since the score was 13-12 10 minutes into the game. Bucknell’s Amy Zehner missed a 12-foot jumper from the right side as time expired.
Middlebrooks scored all 10 of her points in the second half, and Brown scored 12 on an off night shooting. Zehner, an impressive freshman, led all scorers with 25 points. Youngstown State is now 2-1 on the season and has won back-to-back non-conference games on the road for the first time since November 2004.
Up 30-19 at halftime, Bucknell scored eight of the first 10 points of the second period to take a 38-21 lead with 16:28 left. YSU went on an 11-1 run to cut the margin to 39-32 with 12:01 remaining, and five points in 20 seconds by Kelsea Fickieson got the Penguins within five with 6:26 to go.
Bucknell scored the next five points to go back up by 10, and a Zehner jumper at the 3:29 mark put the Bison up 56-46. That accounted for their final points of the night. Heidi Schlegel‘s lay-up after an offensive rebound started the run with 3:15 left, and the three-point plays by Brown and Middlebrooks came just over a minute later.
YSU was 7-for-32 for 21.9 percent and had two field goals in the final 12 minutes. That included going 5-for-18 from inside 10 feet. Bucknell countered by shooting 48.1 percent, making 13-of-27 from the field.
YSU shot just 31.3 percent but hit three more treys than Bucknell and outscored the Bison by eight from the free-throw line. Bucknell shot 51 percent in a losing effort, largely because of being outscored 28-8 off turnovers. Bucknell had 25 turnovers to YSU’s 14, and the Penguins turned the ball over just three times in the second half.
Youngstown State will host American in its Beeghly Center opener on Monday at 7:05 p.m.
** Story courtesy of YSUSports.com
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The same people who vote on where Youngstown State would finish in the Horizon League this season, also vote for who the best player in the conference is. Brandi Brown was named the preseason Horizon League Player of The Year, but her team was picked, by the same people, to finish tenth out of ten teams. Second year coach, Bob Boldon, enters this season optimistic that his team is better for the opening tip this season than they were a year ago. Down the stretch, the Lady Penguins were hot, and nobody wanted to play them because they came around a corner few thought they could. The strong finish included three home wins and a buzzer loss in the opening round of the Horizon League Tournament.
This just in – Brandi Brown is really good. The thing that the Penguins need is consistency from her supporting cast to be successful. Brown became the first scoring leader in conference history to not be voted onto the league’s first team, thus the Penguins will enter this season with sizeable chips on their shoulders. Is it a case of as Brown goes, so do the Penguins?
“Yes, that is true”, remarked Boldon. “Last year, Brandi shot the ball 150 to 200 times more than anybody else. I don’t know if it will be that drastic this year, but she is going to shoot the ball more than anyone else is, Brandi is a really good player. We need to more consistently provide her help. It seems that last year when a couple of other players stepped up and had good games, we won. Brandi is still going to take the last shot, everything will run through her. We still need to improve on scoring when she doesn’t have the ball. She will be a big part of everything until she graduates.”
“We all felt responsible for Brandi not being on the first team last year simply because we underachieved as a team,” Boldon said. “(Being picked to finish 10th) hurt some people’s feelings because they felt like they turned the corner a little bit,” Boldon said. “They thought we should have gotten some more respect from the voters. Whatever fuels us is good for me. There were some people who felt like we weren’t ‘that team’ anymore.”
The Penguins lost Boki Dimitrov to graduation. Makala Gasparek and Maryum Jenkins will not be playing this year either. Enter a new group of players, to be custom-molded by Boldon and tidy up a slick spread-motion system. Newcomers Kelsea Fickiesen and Ashley Lawson add some depth at the guard positions. Junior transfer Devan Matkin further deepens the guard pool. Second-year guard Melissa Thompson should see more time this season.
Familiar faces to continue the march forward include Kenya Middlebrooks and Liz Hornberger. Middlebrooks, a senior, and Hornberger, a sophomore, both ranked in the league’s top-10 in three point shooting percentage. Another sophomore, Monica Touvelle, returns with a wealth of experience, making appearances in all 30 games last season. Heidi Schlegel could really be a big player for Boldon. The redshirt freshman played in the first seven games before injuring her foot and missing the remainder of the 2010-11 campaign.
Tiera Jones and Macey Nortey, both seniors, round out Boldon’s active roster. Jones really came on last year and was very productive when she could stay out of foul trouble. Nortey is a ball of energy and a vocal presence with a do-what-it-takes attitude. They should both play a role in the fortunes of this year’s campaign.
“We want to continue to improve on what we did last year”, said Boldon. “The new people we brought in are good shooters and we spent time this offseason working with the players who are returning, and as a result, they have become better shooters as well. It is a collective movement.”
“There are still a multitude of things that we can teach the players”, said Boldon. “However, it has been easier this season because the system base was already installed, so we are at a higher starting point. Our returning players do not know it all, but the turnaround time with them will be quicker this season. It is more about refreshing them than starting from scratch.”
Boldon’s team opens the season on Friday night at West Virginia. They then travel to IPFW and Bucknell before returning home for the 2011 home opener against American University on November 21. This team will not compete for an outright championship this season, however, I would be surprised if they did not win at least 13 games. This year will be more about being competitive and winning games they should win. With the lack of respect shown by that grand voting panel of Horizon League Wizardry, that means they will finish about 2-28… I say 14-16. Hopefully better.
Boldon outlined his short and long-term goals.
“Long term, you start to think about the Horizon League Tournament. You want to try to get yourself into a favorable position, out of that seven, eight, nine, or ten slot. We would love to be in a position to host a home game in the tournament. Short term, we failed to build off of our successes when we had them last year. We had a little success and got so happy with ourselves that we did not get better.”
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You will not meet a more personable group than the Youngstown State University Women’s Basketball Coaching Staff. They are all very genuine, real, and fun people to talk with. John Vogel, who handles the women’s basketball program from a sports information director position was gracious enough to tape the roundtable interview I got to conduct. Topics discussed are the recruiting process, Brandi Brown being overlooked on postseason awards, and a fun segment where the coaches have to pinpoint what their peers like and dislike.
Big thanks to Mr. Vogel for not only creating this opportunity, but for also being very helpful with my requests. Also, a million thanks to Coach Bob Boldon for being a guy who is always candid and approachable. This was my first real conversation of any kind with the assistants. Pictured above are John Cullen, Kate Schrader, and Tavares Jackson. Not pictured but included in the video is Jen Theissen.
Just before this interview was conducted, these coaches were working with a few of the players on the last day of workouts until August. To watch how they coach as a group was fun. Coach Boldon is kind of an overseer and delegates authority for an assistant to watch a defender and another coach to monitor an offensive player. The other assistants usually encourage the players working in the various drills. The dedication of this staff is going to put bodies in seats over the next couple of years.
Also, a new piece of equipment was in use at practice. As a player shoots a three-point shot, a three foot high box announces the arc, or highest point, that the ball hits on its way to the basket. Coach Theissen explained that the machine would register different numbers based on factors such as a players size. For example, Macey Nortey and Tieara Jones are about a foot different in stature meaning their arc would be different. Very nice piece of equipment!
Thanks again to all who participated!
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Youngstown State University finished the season on a high note and kept their momentum heading into the Horizon League Tournament as they handled Loyola, 84-65, on Senior Day. Brandi Brown was sensational in the win, scoring 27 points and grabbing seven rebounds. This was a physical game, especially the first half, when three players had to leave the contest injured, one being Boki Dimitrov.
Bojana Dimitrov was honored as the lone senior player before the game and had to leave the game when she sprained her ankle with 11:31 left in the first half. Not the storybook ending anyone would have wished for the bubbly Serbian in her last home game. Brown caught an inadvertent elbow to the face while contesting a shot and would miss a stretch of just over seven minutes for the Penguins, who proved worthy even without Brown holding a 13-11 lead while she was attended to. When she came back with what looked like a half-roll of Charmin in her nose (see top picture), Brown made up for lost time. In the second half, she moved into 18th on the YSU all-time scoring list, quite an accomplishment for just a sophomore.
Brown impacted the game as soon as she returned scoring 12 and extending her consecutive free throws made streak to 17-17 on a 5-5 first half. The streak would end at 17 as she missed the first of two charity tosses in the second half. With 13:25 left in the game, Brown hit a couple more free throws to put YSU comfortably ahead, 52-38. Monica Albano did her best to keep Loyola in the game when she buried a three with 10:59 left in the game to cut the YSU lead to 54-43.
Kenya Middlebrooks and Liz Hornberger each hit a three to extend the Penguin lead to 66-55 with 5:58 left in the game. Albano again responded for Loyola hitting another three from the corner to cut the lead to 66-58. The Penguins stretched their lead to 80-62 on a pair of free throws from Macey Nortey with 1:38 left in the game.
“Our intensity at practice has really kicked up”, said Hornberger after the game. ”Brandi always shows up and if the rest of the team intensity can stay where it is, we can play with anyone in the league. We are going into the tournament hot.”
YSU got big numbers from Brown again as she set a few more records. Brown finished the game with 27 points and moved into 18th all-time on the scoring list. She also recorded the fifth highest point total in a season. Hornberger had a career high in points with 12, all threes, and has given some quality minutes the last few games. Tieara Jones played a solid game recording 11 rebounds to go with her 11 points. Monica Touvelle (above) and Kenya Middlebrooks each hit four threes. For Touvelle, the twelve points was a career-high. In fact, five Penguins hitting double figures had not happened since 2004.
With the win, Youngstown State nabbed their second in a row to end the regular season and improved to 6-23 and 4-14 in the Horizon League. The 84 points scored was the highest total for the Penguins offense this season who shot a blazing 53.8% from the floor in the second half.
Loyola got a great effort from Monica Albano who finished the game with 34 points. The Ramblers dipped to 11-18 and 5-13 in the Horizon League.
Coach Bob Boldon talked about the constant improvement and expectations heading into the league tournament. ”The way our offense is run, it takes time to pick things up and develop. We are better than we were last month and this is when you want the team to be playing their best basketball. It is better to be a bottom team in a tournament and make crazy things happen, than being one of the good teams and having all of the crazy stuff happen to you.”
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It has been a tough few years for the Youngstown State Women’s Basketball team. The Lady Penguins looked dominant and Brandi Brown scored a career-high 35 points as YSU coasted to a 72-58 victory over UIC. Brown also tied a school record with 12 consecutive free throws made tying Brianne Kenneally and Liz Hauger.
With the win, the Penguins could finish ninth in the Horizon League. It is a mark of improvement over last season and the Penguins improved to 5-23, and 3-14 in the Horizon League. UIC fell to .500 at 14-14 with the loss.
The first half was all YSU. The Penguins held a 41-23 halftime lead. The 41 point effort in the first half was the second highest total this season. Brown paced the Penguins with 17 points and five rebounds. UIC got ten first half points from Briana Hinkle. UIC turned the ball over 13 times in the half and got only one assist. Youngstown State, which was outrebounded 20-18 in the opening half, shot 5-15 from three point land, whereas UIC did not attempt a three.
In the second half, UIC rallied to trail only 53-42 with 11:35 left in the game. Too much Brandi Brown on this night, who tied her career high of 29 points with a pair of free throws at the 9:58 mark to restore a 12 point lead for the Penguins. Liz Hornberger hit a three to also tie her career-high of nine points to put YSU ahead 60-49.
Jasmine Bailey, who played a great second half for the Flames, cut the Youngstown State lead to nine points at 60-51 when she followed her own miss. The Penguins, however, responded when Tieara Jones hit a runner and drew the foul with 6:05 left to extend the YSU lead to 63-51.
The Penguins couldn’t ask for much more from Brown who finished with a career-best 35 points and 11 rebounds. She was also an impressive 12-12 from the free throw line. In fact, the entire Penguins team was a perfect 17-17 from the line. It was Brown’s 12th double-double of the season.
While looking at his stat sheet, Coach Bob Bolden joked, “17 of 17, it was good coaching.”
UIC got 13 points from Bailey and Taylor Foulks contributed another 14. Unfortunately for the Flames, it is hard to win on the road when you turn the ball over 17 times.
Boldon also commented on his team keeping composure down the stretch. ”This was a lot like the Cleveland State game. We had a good lead at halftime and collapsed. I left that game wondering if we had learned anything. I got my answer tonight that we did indeed learn something. I was happy that we were able to keep our composure down the stretch. Brandi was fantastic. This might be the most complete game we played this year.”
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Cleveland State rallied from a 12-point deficit in the second half and went 8-for-8 from the free-throw line in the final 40 seconds to beat the Youngstown State women’s basketball team 76-71 on Saturday at the Wolstein Center.
YSU’s Brandi Brown scored 28 points, and Tieara Jones had 14 points and 13 rebounds. Shawnita Garland scored 25 points for Cleveland State, including eight in the final minute. Her steal of a short pass and fast-break lay-up with a minute remaining broke a 66-66 tie. Shalonda Winton added 20 points for the Vikings, who improved to 17-10 overall and moved into a tie for third place in the league standings at 10-6.
Cleveland State held its largest lead of the game at 43-36 with 15:26 left, but Youngstown State scored 16 straight points over the next three minutes to go up 52-43. Boki Dimitrov’s basket then gave the Penguins their largest lead at 63-51 with 7:04 remaining, but Cleveland State went on a 15-1 run to regain the lead on Garland’s bucket with 2:44 left.
Brown’s basket with 2:24 remaining tied the score at 66-66, and neither team scored until Garland’s steal and lay-up with a minute left. Honesty King hit two free throws with 38.2 seconds remaining to put the Vikings up four, but Brown’s old-fashioned three-point play cut the margin to 70-69 with 25.6 ticks left. Garland made two free throws for the Vikings to put them up 72-69, and Jones missed the tying 3-pointer from the wing with 14 seconds left. Garland made two free throws with 11.3 seconds remaining, and she hit two more with 4.6 seconds on the clock to finish it off.
Jones had 10 points, six rebounds and three assists at halftime, and Kenya Middlebrooks added seven. Winton had 11 at the break to lead all scorers. Brown had just six points at halftime but erupted for 22 in the second period.
Although the Penguins were turned away late for the second straight game against a top-tier team in the Horizon League standings, they showed a big improvement from their first game against the Vikings. Cleveland State beat YSU 86-65 at Beeghly Center when the teams played on Jan. 29. CSU outscored the Penguins 50-12 in the paint and held a 42-25 rebounding edge in that contest. Today, YSU outscored Cleveland State 34-28 in the paint and matched it on the glass with 30 rebounds.
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Detroit went on a big run in the first half and scored 12 of the final 14 points of the game to beat the Youngstown State women’s basketball team 52-43 on Thursday evening at Calihan Hall.
Brandi Brown scored 24 points and grabbed 15 rebounds for Youngstown State, which led 41-40 with 7:26 remaining. No Penguin other than Brown scored in the final 14 minutes.
Detroit shot just 33.3 percent and committed 10 more turnovers than the Penguins but held a 55-31 edge in rebounding.
Dominique Dixon came off the bench to score 12 points to lead Detroit, and she scored six straight points for the Titans as they started their final push. Britney Murphy also had 11 off the bench, and Yar Shayok grabbed 16 rebounds despite playing in foul trouble most of the night.
YSU shot 25 percent overall and 26.1 percent from 3-point range. The Penguins had just five turnovers. The Titans went on a 17-2 run over four-and-a-half minutes in the first half as they turned a nine-point deficit into a 30-25 lead at halftime.
Detroit started 2-for-11 as YSU built a 13-4 lead. Brown scored her 10th point of the contest with 14:44 remaining to give the Guins a nine-point advantage. YSU then went without a field goal for almost five minutes, but Detroit was only able to trim the deficit down to 13-7.
Tieara Jones hit a free throw, and Brown’s jumper put the Penguins up 16-7 with 10:01 left. Detroit then went on a 17-2 run and took its first lead when Dixon hit a jumper with 3:38 left. The Titans ended up going ahead 24-18 at the 2:22 mark before Brown’s jumper off a good post move stopped the long drought.
Detroit led by as many as eight in the half before Macey Nortey hit both of her one-and-one free throws with 0.7 seconds left to make the score 30-25 at the break. The Titans hit just five of their first 20 attempts from the field, but they closed out the half by making seven of their last eight shots.
Detroit took its largest lead of the game at 36-27 with 16:54 remaining, but the Titans did not score again for nearly nine minutes as YSU went on a 10-0 run to go up 37-36. Neither team led by more than one until Dixon ended a 12-and-a-half minute field-goal drought the Titans that put them up 44-41 with 4:19 to play.
Dixon stole a pass and hit a lay-up under Detroit’s basket to put the Titans up 46-41, and Brown hit a jumper on YSU’s next possession to end a four-and-a-half minute drought with 2:58 remaining. The Penguins did not score again, and Detroit scored the final six points.
Youngstown State will play at Wright State on Saturday at 1:30 p.m. The game was originally scheduled to tip at 2 p.m. but was moved up a half hour earlier this week.