Sharon Karungi (Kampala, Uganda/[Northern Oklahoma College]) reclaimed her stroke Thursday night, but the Crusaders couldn't find an answer for Heidi Schlegel and the Youngstown State Penguins. The Penguins defeated Valpo 62-49 as the Brown and Gold continue to search for their first home win of the season.
A seesaw first half saw six ties and four lead changes as neither team extended a lead past six points. Karungi shot 6-for-11 in the first twenty minutes as her 15-point output represented her best half of the season thus far. Senior Liz Horton (Cannelburg, Ind./Barr-Reeve) drained a three-pointer four minutes in to keep her streak alive. Horton has registered a trey in each of the last eight games. Though Charae Richardson (Lafayette, Ind./Jefferson [Vincennes]) was held scoreless in the first stanza, the fifth-year senior distributed five assists and gathered two steals.
The Penguins were powered by Schlegel and Karen Flagg, as the duo combined for 19 points and 12 rebounds. Schlegel was a basket and a board away from a double-double at halftime. Youngstown State held a 34-28 advantage at the break.
YSU opened the second half with a 9-0 run as the Crusaders didn't register their first points until Karungi canned a jumper at the 12:38 mark. The field goal brought an eight-minute, 54-second scoreless stretch to a close. Meanwhile, the Penguins widened their lead to double digits on a lay-up from Flagg. Valpo was never able to cut the lead to single digits as Youngstown State cruised to its first road win of 2013-14.
Though she shot just 2-of-10 from the field in the second half, Schlegel knocked down 10 free throws on 11 attempts. She also hauled in ten boards (six offensive) en route to a 19-point, 19-rebound evening.
Aliyah Isaac (Richton Park, Ill./Marian Catholic) provided a spark off the bench as the freshman shot 4-for-4 as part of a nine-point effort.
Karungi finished with a career-best 21 points and nine rebounds. The junior, who finished in double digits in seven of the team's first ten games, did so for the first time since December 13th against Butler. Karungi ended the night shooting 8-for-17.
Valparaiso (2-12, 0-1 Horizon) will travel to Michigan next week to take on the Oakland Golden Grizzlies (5-9, 0-1 Horizon). Tipoff is slated for Wednesday at 6:00 pm CT. Links to the audio, video, and live stats will be available at Valpoathletics.com.