Flames rally for win in OT against Youngstown State

Terri Bender

Terri Bender scored her third career double-double Saturday with 12 points and 11 rebounds at Youngstown State. — Photo: Steve Woltmann

The women’s basketball team (14-8, 4-5 Horizon League) trailed Youngstown State (15-7, 4-5 Horizon League) by 12 at halftime Saturday but mounted a second-half comeback to win in overtime, 66-63.

The Flames are back home tonight to host Detroit (8-13, 3-5 Horizon League) at 7 p.m. at the UIC Pavilion.

The Flames forced 13 second-half turnovers and held the Penguins to 19 percent shooting (5-of-26) after halftime. Youngstown State limited UIC to nine field goals in the first half and shot 44 percent on its way to a 33-21 halftime lead. The Flames outscored the Penguins, 45-30, in the second half and overtime to capture the road victory.

Ruvanna Campbell had 18 points and nine rebounds in the second half. Youngstown State was 0-of-7 from the field in overtime, including 0-of-6 from downtown.

“The first half was a struggle for us offensively but we turned defensive pressure into points in the second half,” UIC head coach Regina Miller said. “This was a must-win game and our players responded to our defensive challenge at halftime. Ruvanna and Terri were much more active in the second half and made clutch plays down the stretch.”

Campbell, who ranks third nationally with 14.2 rebounds per contest, finished with 23 points and 15 rebounds for her sixth straight double-double. She has 17 double-doubles this season. Campbell also had four assists and two steals over 43 minutes of action.

Terri Bender scored 12 points and grabbed a career-high 11 rebounds for her third career double-double. She has 12 straight double-figure scoring performances. She dished out four assists and picked up three steals in 45 minutes.

Gisselle Truiett and Melita Emanuel-Carr picked up two steals each as the Flames finished with 10 steals. Emanuel-Carr added nine points and Truiett contributed seven points and five rebounds. Kendyl Nunn scored eight points in 14 minutes off the bench.

The Penguins went on an 8-0 run and held their largest lead of the contest at 33-21 going into halftime. The Flames started the second half on an 8-0 run to trim the lead to 33-29. YSU responded with a 7-0 run to push ahead, 40-29, with 12:12 left.

The Flames scored 12 of the next 14 points and later took their first lead of the second half, 51-49, on Campbell’s free throws with 4:26 remaining. Indiya Benjamin’s three-pointer with 1:11 on the clock gave Youngstown State a 59-57 lead but Campbell converted two free throws to send the game into overtime.

UIC scored the first five points of overtime before Youngstown State made four free throws to trim the Flames lead to 64-63 with 2:01 on the clock. Campbell’s steal with 30 seconds remaining set up two free throws by Bender for the final points of the contest. Nikki Arbanas’ last-second three-point attempt fell short.


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