ALLIANCE, OH- The Juniata women's basketball team went cold in the second half as Case Western Reserve pulled away to win, 70-46, Saturday afternoon on the second day of M-Club Tournament on the campus of Mount Union.
Gracie Stauffer (Loysville, Pa. / West Perry) gave the Eagles an early 2-0 lead when she rebounded her own miss and laid it back in, 23 seconds into the game. The Spartans countered with a three before Averie Hess (Jersey Shore, Pa. / Jersey Shore) drilled a jumper off a pass from Madison Colyer (Newville, Pa. / Big Spring). The teams traded baskets over the next several minutes, with a layup by Cassidy Arnold (York, Pa. / Eastern York HS) followed by another Stauffer layup, this one off a pass from Grace Long (Harrisburg, Pa. / Central Dauphin) which made it 10-8 with four and half minutes to go in the first. A three from Kymiah Carpenter (Baltimore, Md. / Gerstell Academy) off another Long assist followed by a Hess jumper put JC ahead, 15-10 with two minutes left. Arnold converted two free throws, the Spartans knocked down two foul shots of their own before Carpenter scored inside to make it 19-12. The Spartans drilled a three with eight seconds on the clock as the Eagles led by four after one.
Stauffer scored on back to back possessions to open the second to put the Eagles ahead by eight. The Spartans scored six straight points over the next three minutes to cut the Juniata lead to two before Taylor Vrabel (Chambersburg, Pa. / Chambersburg) scored on a putback to push the lead back to four. The teams went back and forth, with a pair of Hess foul shots along with a Colyer jumper off a Larissa Leonard (Three Springs, Pa. / Southern Huntingdon) assist pushing the Eagle advantage to six. The Spartans managed to pull even at 29-29 with 37 seconds to go in the half prior to Leonard scoring on a layup off of a Stauffer assist as Juniata led by two heading into the half.
The Eagles scored the first four points of the second half on a pair of Stauffer free throws and a Colyer jumper off a pass from Long. The Spartan's first bucket of the half was a three, but two Colyer foul shots made it 37-32 Juniata. The Spartans flipped a switch in the final seven minutes of the quarter as the went on a 17-3 run and led 49-40 heading into the fourth.
The Spartans didn't slow down as they outscored the Eagles 21-6 in the final frame to ease to a 70-46 victory.
Stauffer was named to the all-tournament for her strong all-around play over the two games.
Juniata will play at St. Vincent, Tuesday at 5:30.