Panther Women Pull Away for Fifth Straight Win

Photo credit to Wade Aiken.
Photo credit to Wade Aiken.

Pitt-Bradford's Ali Rinfrette was relatively held in check for the first three quarters of Saturday's contest against Penn State Behrend. She more than made up for it in the fourth quarter.

Rinfrette scored 13 points in the final frame, sparking a 24-point quarter for the Panthers, and Pitt-Bradford pulled way to defeat Penn State Behrend, 68-51, Saturday afternoon at the KOA Arena.

It was the team's fifth straight win overall and ninth consecutive victory against the team from Erie.   

Early on appeared the Panthers were going to run away from the Lions before fans even had a chance to settle into their seats.

Pitt-Bradford led 19-4 after the first seven minutes and stretched the lead to 17 midway through the second quarter on Rinfrette's layup. However, the Panthers went cold from the field and were held scoreless the rest of the half. The Lions capitalized, scoring 12 unanswered points, including a basket at the buzzer, to trail 28-23 at the break.

Brittany Watts' layup at the 7:58 mark of the third quarter snapped a scoreless drought of 8:38 and momentarily breathed new life into the Panthers. Penn State Behrend continued to mount its charge, ripping off nine straight points to take its first lead of the game at 36-34 late in the period.

The Panthers went back ahead on Rinfrette's basket moments later, but the Lions remained close. Penn State Behrend hit consecutive threes, the latter on the first play of the fourth quarter, to tie the score at 44.

Colebert countered on the other end with a triple of her own, igniting a 22-2 scoring burst that delivered a resounding knockout. Rinfrette accounted for 11 of the 22 points, connecting for three three-pointers during a two-minute stretch, to finish with a game-high 24 points. After registering just eight made baskets during the middle periods, the Panthers hit 8-14 shots over the final 10 minutes.

Pitt-Bradford forced the Lions into 29 turnovers and scored 16 fast-break points. In all, the Panthers netted 35 points off Penn State Behrend turnovers. Kaserra Owens and Rinfrette collected 13 of the team's 19 steals.

Pitt-Bradford only shot 39 percent from the field but limited the Lions to 31 percent shooting. Penn State Behrend outrebounded the Panthers 49-35 yet managed just eight second-chance points.

Colebert totaled 11 points off the bench for the Panthers, and Darien Lantz added 10 points, four assists and three steals. Brittany Watts and Shirleah Ragin each had seven points apiece, and Watts pulled down rebounds.

Pitt-Bradford improves to 7-5 on the season and 5-1 in the AMCC. The Panthers will seek their sixth straight win when they host D'Youville Monday at 6 p.m.