Wilkes-Barre, Pa. - Two Lady Lions topped 20 points on Saturday night as Hazleton took on Wilkes University in the Marts Center, but the Colonels command of the paint led to a 93-73 loss for Hazleton. Wilkes outscored the Lady Lions 60-32 from close range and out-rebounded Hazleton by a margin of 25 to keep Hazleton trailing for most of the evening.
Senior Mckenzie Prutsman (Jasper, Ny) had a terrific night penetrating the Colonel defense, connecting on 14-of-28 from the field to lead all scorers in the game with 36 points. The senior went 1-for-3 from beyond the arc and 7-of-8 from the charity stripe to pace the field and top the 30-point mark for the seventh time in her career.
Sophomore Lauren Pataki (Hazleton, Pa.) had a strong performance totaling 21 points and eight rebounds in the game. Pataki knocked in a pair of triples while going 9-for-10 from the free throw line to set a career mark in the scoring column. Junior Mekenzie Wolfe racked up her second double-digit rebounding effort in as many games, posting a team-high 10 rebounds.
Despite the lopsided defeat, Hazleton got off to a solid start, holding the lead five minutes into the action. A pair of early buckets by Prutsman gave Hazleton their first advantage and a triple by sophomore Kendra Pfeil (Hazleton, Pa.) put the Lions up 11-8 at the 6:13 mark, but Hazleton would cool off for the remainder of the first period. Wilkes would capitalize on the Hazleton scoring lull, ending the quarter on a 12-0 run and continued to set the pace in the second period. After trailing by 17 early in the second frame, an 8-2 by Pataki cut the Colonel advantage back to just 11 but that would be as close as the Lady Lions would come the rest of the evening.
The Colonels built a 20-point cushion by the midway point and led by as many as 28 points in the third quarter. Hazleton continued to compete, winning the final quarter by a score of 30-22. Pataki and Prutsman were on fire combining for 28 points in the period and cut the Wilkes lead back to just 15 with just under six minutes remaining, but the Colonels cushion was too much to overcome in the end.
Next up: The Lady Lions fall to 1-1 on the season and will start a three game homestand on Tuesday, November 13 with a visit from Lycoming College at 6:00 p.m. in the Dr. Thomas M. Cacesse Gymnasium.