Dominating first quarter launches IU East past women


Photo by Briana Walton | Point Park Athletics

Senior guard Shaniya Rivers drives through IU East defenders in a 96-78 loss last Tuesday at CCAC Allegheny

Written By Allison Schubert, Co-Features Editor

The women’s basketball team ended its four-game River States Conference (RSC) winning streak last Tuesday against Indiana University (IU) East.

The Red Wolves were “receiving votes” and in the 27 spot in the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) Division II Top 25 Poll that was released just before tipoff.

IU East outscored Point Park 35-16 in the first quarter alone. The Pioneers’ defense gives up an average of 66 points per game, and the Red Wolves were more than halfway there after just the first ten minutes of play.

“We need to keep working on eliminating the stupid little mistakes and really focus,” junior forward Sam Weir said. “Our travel schedule coming up is not easy.”

Despite being down 55-36 at halftime, the Pioneers had a solid first half. They were shooting 45 percent from beyond the arch and were shooting 48 percent total going into the locker room.

“Everyone has been stepping up to do their part,” senior guard Maryssa Agurs said. “I think we all motivate each other and push each other.”

Point Park’s early faults came in the form of 12 turnovers and being out-rebounded 20-10.

The Pioneers came out in the second half ready for a comeback, outscoring the Red Wolves 25-18 in the third quarter, but still down 73-61.

“I believe having a high energy level coming from the bench and the players on the floor at any point in the game allows our whole team to advance,” senior captain Shaniya Rivers said. “Each player helping one another makes everyone better.”

Point Park was able to cut IU East’s lead to just eight points early in the fourth, but shot just 17 percent from long-range in the second half and could not keep up with the Red Wolves’ strong offense. The Red Wolves took home the win 96-78.

The Pioneers put up their second-best numbers of the season in shooting percentage (46 percent) and baskets made (31).

Agurs led Point Park in scoring with 17 points, followed by freshman guard Mitch Burns’ 12 points and a contribution of nine points each from Weir and senior Kiana Daley. Daley’s points came from a perfect shooting game, with each of her three treys falling.

“I do have a New Year’s resolution for the team,” Rivers said. “That is to win our last remaining games and take a trip to Iowa to compete for a national championship.”

Point Park was supposed to travel to Ohio Christian University in Circleville, Ohio on Saturday, but the game was postponed due to the inclement weather the region experienced.

The Pioneers are at home Friday and Sunday for RSC games against Indiana University Southeast and Brescia University.