WILKES BARRE, Pa. -- Penn State Wilkes Barre hung with Penn State Brandywine for 20 minutes, but a 14-0 run to start the second half helped Brandywine claim a 66-52 Penn State University Athletic Conference women's basketball victory on Monday night.
Brandywine faced an eight-point deficit midway through the first quarter, but slimmed the margin to three by ending the stanza with seven of the final nine points.
The Lions netted six-straight points, taking their first lead at the 7:57 mark of the second quarter following a pair of free throw from Nicolette Napoleon (Springfield, Pa./Penn Charter). Napoleon added a layup that made the advantage 23-20, but back-to-back baskets by Jacqueline Rabender put Wilkes Barre back on top. The teams traded baskets during the final two minutes of the half and entered intermission tied at 27-27.
Brandywine held Wilkes Barre without a point over the first seven minutes of the second half and did not allow a made field goal until the third quarter buzzer sounded and the Lions took advantage of the scoring drought, building a 14-point lead. Alyssa Abbonizio (Springfield, Pa./Springfield) sparked the surge by burying a jumper and three-pointer to open the half, while Chrissy Gledhill (Secane, Pa./Cardinal O'Hara) and Napoleon added baskets and Madison D'Ambrosio (Springfield, Pa./Springfield) made the lead double digits with a triple at the 5:59 mark. Rabender's free throw ended the run with 3:28 to play in the stanza, but Brandi James (Glenolden, Pa./Interboro) sank two free throws and Nikki Velez (Gloucester, N.J./Gloucester City) buried a jumper during the final minute of the quarter to swell the lead to 15 points after 30 minutes.
After Wilkes Barre put down the first bucket of the fourth quarter, Brandywine reeled off the next eight points, taking its biggest lead at 56-35 following Abbonizio's trifecta with 7:11 to go.
Abbonizio and D'Ambrosio both poured in 14 points to lead the offense, while James added 11 points and Velez chipped in eight.
D'Ambrosio pulled in 14 rebounds for her third double-double of the year, while also dishing out a team-high five assists. James tallied eight boards, while Abbonizio grabbed seven rebounds and Velez registered three steals.
Brandywine held a huge edge on the glass, outrebounding Wilkes Barre 44-22. Twenty of the Lions' boards came on the offensive end of the court.
Brandywine (10-5, 6-0 PSUAC), which won its third road game in the last four days, returns home for the first time in six weeks on Friday when the Lions host Penn State Beaver at 6:00 pm.