ALTOONA, Pa. – Despite a strong fourth-quarter comeback, the Franciscan women's basketball team fell to AMCC opponent, Penn St.-Altoona, 83-37, Wednesday evening.
Trailing 71-23 going into the finals seven minutes, freshman Rebekah Nevarez hit a three-pointed after junior captain Gaby De Jesus created a possession for the Lady Barons with a steal. De Jesus made a layup on Franciscan's next possession to cut the Lion lead down to 71-28. In her first game of the season with the team, junior Raegan Stead made a jumper with 5:10 to play to cap a 7-0 run for the Lady Barons to trim the lead to 71-30. After a pair of Lion layups, De Jesus hit a jumper with 3:01 to play to cut the deficit to 75-32. Altoona answered with a jumper of its own before Stead hit a free throw with 2:33 to play. Paige Burk and Nevarez traded layups before the Lions closed out their scoring with a layup and a jumper. Stead closed out the game's scoring with a layup for her 11th points of the game to seal the game 83-37 in favor of Penn St.-Altoona.
Nevarez led the Lady Barons with 15 points and nine rebounds while Stead chipped in 11 points and two assists. De Jesus finished with eight points and three steals. Freshman Rhiannon Brodbine finished the day with nine rebounds, two assists, and a steal.
After Altoona took a 6-2 lead midway through the first quarter, Stead kept the Lady Barons within two, 6-4, with her first jumper of the game. The Lions pushed their lead to 12-4 before Franciscan rattled off six-straight points to cut the lead to 12-10. Altoona closed out the quarter with five-straight points to lead 17-10 after the first 10 minutes.
Penn St.-Altoona out-scored the Lady Barons 47-11 between the second and third quarter to build its largest lead of the game, 64-21, with 10 minutes to play.
Franciscan shot 27.1% from the floor (13-48) and went 8-for-13 from the free throw line for the game.
The Lady Barons return home on Saturday as they welcome Pitt.-Bradford to Kuzma Court for a 4pm tip off.