Media, Pa. - Hazleton led by double figures heading into the fourth period of Saturday afternoon's Penn State University Athletic Conference bout at Penn State Brandywine until a 29 point barrage of offense by the home team in the final period sank Hazleton's hopes to get back to .500 in the PSUAC. Hazleton out-shot Brandywine from the field by 10 percentage points but 26 turnovers cost Hazleton late as they fell on the road by the final score of 72-68, dropping to a record of 5-7 in the PSUAC while Brandywine improved to 9-4.
Hazleton started off slow with just four points in the first six minutes of play until freshman Alexa Clark (Effort, Pa.) caught fire in the final minutes. Clark sunk three triples down with the period winding down, adding a conventional basket as Hazleton surged on an 18-6 run to close out the period.
Both squads would have their struggles in the second frame. Hazleton would turn the ball over six times and get off only 13 attempts in the quarter but bailed themselves out contending every shot on the opposite end of the floor and holding the home team to just 16.7 percent shooting in the quarter. Brandywine would win the period 13-11 although still trailed at the break 33-29.
A solid third period for the Lady Lions saw five different players contribute in the scoring column, helping the Hazleton squad expand their cushion to as many as 13 points. But Brandywine would rachet up the pressure in the fourth quarter, forcing six Hazleton miscues over a five minutes stretch of play that eliminated the double digit advantage. Brandywine took the lead for the first time since the opening quarter with less than three minutes to play and closed out the win with a 7-3 run in the final two minutes to pull off the late comeback win.
Miscues spoiled on otherwise fine effort, dropping Hazleton to 6th in PSUAC East standings. Alexa Clark notched 4-of-7 from beyond the arc to pace the Lady Lions with 21 points, a season high for the freshman. Freshman Scarlet Vargas (Bronx, Ny.) added 15 points and nine rebounds while freshman RosaLydia Caputo (Howard Beach, Ny.) totaled a double-double with 10 points, 13 rebounds and a pair of blocked shots.
Next up: Hazleton remains in the hunt with a crucial stretch of games looming in the distance. Hazleton will look to get back on track on Tuesday night with a road game at Penn State Mont Alto at 6:00 p.m.