Penguin men, women both lose conference road games

From staff, wire reports

CHICAGO — Tarkus Ferguson scored 23 points shooting 7 of 10 from 3-point range and Illinois-Chicago snapped a two-game skid and beat Youngstown State 78-63 Thursday night.

Godwin Boahen scored 21 points with four 3s, Rob Howard shot 5 of 8 from the field and the Flames made 31 of 56 (55 percent) from the field including 14 of 31 (45) from distance.

The Flames (8-9, 2-2 Horizon League) built a 14-0 lead with Ferguson burying a pair of 3s, Boahen a pair of layups and Howard adding a jump shot and a layup. Later, Ferguson added a 3 with 10:55 before halftime and the Flames led 24-9 en route to a 45-23 lead at the break. Jordan Blount’s layup with 16:29 made it 54-27.

Jelani Simmons scored 15 points for Youngstown State (5-13, 1-4). The Penguins now have lost five of their last six.

Meanwhile, in Milwaukee, the YSU women’s team rallied from a 16-point deficit to force overtime, but the home team scored the final six points of the game to win 71-68 another nail-biter between the two programs.

The Penguins fell behind 43-27 with less than 13 minutes left in the game, and they were down 50-37 entering the fourth. YSU outscored the Panthers 23-10 in the final 10 minutes of regulation, and the Penguins led 68-65 with 2:21 left after a Sarah Cash bucket.

Cash’s knee brace was knocked loose on the basket, which kept her out of YSU’s defensive possession. UWM’s Jamie Reit scored quickly to get the Panthers within one, and neither team hit a field goal in the final 2:15 of the game. Milwaukee’s final four points came from the free throw line, and the final two came with 0.2 seconds left after the Panthers forced a turnover on YSU’s final possession.

Youngstown State had its five-game winning streak snapped, and its streak of eight straight Horizon League road victories also came to an end. The Penguins dropped to 12-4 overall and 4-1 in conference play as they head to league preseason favorite Green Bay on Saturday. Milwaukee, which had lost its last two games by five points total, got its first league win and improved to 6-9 overall. This was the sixth straight contest between Youngstown State and Milwaukee that has been decided by four points or fewer.

Cash finished with a game-high 25 points, going 7-of-14 from the field and 11-of-11 from the free-throw line. McKenah Peters scored a career-high 17 points, and she hit the tying basket with 2.6 seconds left in regulation to force overtime. Chelsea Olson had 13 points, five rebounds and four blocks.

It was Milwaukee’s School Day game, and the attendance of 3,089 was the fifth-largest in UWM history.

YSU was 19-for-21 from the free-throw line in the game, and Cash became the third Penguin in program history to go at least 11-for-11 in a game.