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Spartans Unable to Hold Early Advantage; Fall to Marymount

YORK, PA - The York College women’s basketball team fell 76-69 to a talented Marymount University squad Wednesday night in Capital Athletic Conference action at York’s Grumbacher Sport & Fitness Center.  The loss snaps the Spartans two-game CAC winning streak and sets their season mark back to 13-4 (5-3 CAC) while the Saints improve to 14-2 (7-1 CAC).

The Spartans started out hot, blitzing a stunned Marymount team for an early 10-0 lead.  Junior forward Chanel Perez (Biglerville, Pa./Gettysburg) laid in the game’s first two points to begin the Spartan barrage.  A jumper by senior Kristen Daly (Harrisburg, Pa./Trinity) followed by two free throws from the forward gave the green and white a quick 6-0 lead.  Point guard Keli Ward (Nottingham, Pa./Oxford) and freshman April Sparkman (Walkersville, Md./Walkersville) capped the early run with a lay-up and jumper respectively with 16:21 to play in the first frame.

During the early run, the green and white shot an impressive 4-for-5 from the floor and drained both of their free throw attempts.  The Spartans were also not very hospitable to their guests, forcing Marymount to shoot 0-for-8 from the field.

Marymount’s Terell White averted the shutout and ended the streak with a pair of freebies at the 15:47 mark.  White would turn out to be a Spartan killer all night.

After the Saints cut the Spartan advantage to four at 10-6, York stretched their lead back out to ten at 19-9 with 11:20 to play in the half.  Ward canned her third and fourth points of the game to give the green and white their 19-9 advantage.  
Over this 9-3 run, York moved the ball very well to keep the Marymount defense off balance.      

The Saints took their first lead of the night at 25-23 with 4:21 remaining on the heels of a Kathleen Brown bucket.  Brown tallied six straight points and scored eight of Marymount’s ten over a 2:28 period.  The 5’11” forward consistently beat the Spartans down the floor and was able to set up great post position that frustrated her green and white counterparts.

York regained the lead for a brief 1:24 period behind the sharpshooting of Sparkman and junior Amanda Andrews (Fallston, Md./Fallston).  They could not sustain the advantage, as the Saints quickly jumped back on top at 30-29 with 1:56 remaining.            

It looked as if York would regain the momentum, as Andrews scored on a fast break to bring the Spartans back to within two at 33-31.  Unfortunately for the home squad, a backbreaking last second put back by Marymount’s Kathryn Wilson off a missed White triple built the Saint lead to 35-31 going into the half.

The second half belonged to almost entirely to Marymount, save for one tie at 42-42 with 13:21 remaining in the contest.  White canned 16 of her game-high 26 points in the second frame.  The guard shot a solid 4-for-6 from the floor in the latter 20 minutes and lit it up from the charity stripe nailing 8-of-9.  

York battled throughout the second half staying within striking distance for most of the frame.  The Spartans frequently cut the lead to within three even closing to within one at 46-45 on an Andrews three with 11:53 remaining.

A pair of Ward free throws at the 6:28 mark gave the Spartans their best opportunity late in the game as the green and white only trailed by two at 59-57.  Another Brown lay-up increased the Saint lead to four and York would never get that close again.

Sparkman led the Spartans on the night with 16 points on 6-for-10 shooting including 3-for-4 from the free throw line.  Ward, the reigning Spartan Athlete of the Week, tallied her second double-double of season as she recorded ten points and ten rebounds. Andrews and Perez each added 13 points in their 36 and 23 minutes respectively.  Freshman Jaimie Sapp (Bluemont, Va./Loudoun Valley) performed exceptionally well off the bench for the Spartans chipping in eight points and playing sensational defense on Brown.

White’s 26 points paced the Saint offense on 7-for-16 shooting and a stellar 12-for-13 from the line.  She also grabbed seven rebounds and dished out three assists playing all 40 minutes.  Brown was Marymount’s second 20-point scorer registering 21 in her 35 minutes of action.  Kathryn Wilson was the third Saint in double figures cashing in 12 points and adding four assists.  

The Spartans shot 39.1% from the field on 27-for-69 shooting.  York also pulled down 34 rebounds and ripped nine steals.  

Marymount hit 38.3% of their attempts going 23-for-60 from the floor, including a strong 47.6% in the second stanza.  The Saints did outrebound the Spartans by 14 grabbing 48 boards including 19 on the offensive glass.  The story of the contest was at the free throw line as Marymount canned an incredible 27-of-33 from the stripe while York only made it to the line 15 times making 12 of those attempts.  

The Spartans hit the road this weekend as they travel to Hood for a Saturday CAC match-up.  Tip time from Frederick, Maryland is set for 2:00 pm.

GAME BOX 

April Sparkman photo courtesy of Eric Linsley 

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