Hazleton hangs on for road win at Schuylkill

Katura McCorkle at the free throw line.
Katura McCorkle at the free throw line.

Schuylkill Haven, Pa. - The Lady Lions moved to 4-4 in the Penn State University Athletic Conference on Monday afternoon following a 67-57 win at Penn State Schuylkill. 

Hazleton dominated the first half of Monday's game, holding Schuylkill to just 26 percent shooting in the first half. The Lady Lions used a 13-2 run beginning at the end of the first quarter and five minutes into the second period to create a double figure lead, the result of five different scorers by the Hazleton squad including a pair of triples from the Clark sisters. Hazleton continued to stay hot from beyond the arc to close out the half, getting three point makes from freshmen Alexa Clark (Effort, Pa.), Scarlet Vargas (Bronx, Ny.) and Phillis Fugah (Philadelphia, Pa.) that gave Hazleton a 17 point cushion by halftime. 

Despite the large deficit, Schuylkill would chip away at the Hazleton lead throughout the second half. Aided by 12 second half turnovers by Hazleton and a 15-for-16 effort from the charity stripe, Schuylkill shrank the lead to single digits midway through the fourth quarter. Schuylkill capped a 7-0 run on a Chelsea Erkes three point shot with 2:13 remaining in regulation to put the pressure on the Lions whose lead stood at 63-57 but Hazleton would respond two possessions later. After securing a defensive board on the opposite end, freshman Katura McCorkle (Philadelphia, Pa.)  nabbed a clutch rebound on the offensive glass, finishing with a put back lay up to stretch Hazleton's lead back to eight points. With just 1:19 remaining and a three possession game, Hazleton held Schuylkill to just two shooting opportunities, finishing off their conference rival by the ten point margin. 

Four Lady Lions finished in double-figures including a pair of double-doubles by McCorkle and Vargas. McCorkle tallied 10 points and a game high 16 boards for the Lions including the clutch put back late in the game to secure the win. Vargas added 12 points and 12 rebounds while Phillis Fugah totaled 11 points with a pair of swipes. Rounding out the top performers for Hazleton was Alexa Clark who continued to thrive from beyond the arc, notching four triples for 12 points on the day. 

Next up: Hazleton is back in action on Tuesday night for a non-conference bout with Clarks Summit University. Tip off set for 7:00 p.m. in the Dr. Thomas M. Caccese Gymnasium.