The Youngstown Ursuline Irish defeated the Benedictine Bengals 62-40 on Tuesday night in a lopsided affair at Truman Fieldhouse.
Benedictine won the tip-off and kept the first quarter close, but could never find a continuous groove throughout the game. Irish sophomore guard Dashaun Will started the game with back-to-back three point shots to give the Irish an early 8-4 lead. Four different Bengals scored to cut into the slim deficit to tie the game at 12 to end the first quarter.
In the second quarter, the Irish started to show their physicality. Between their dominance on the boards with both offensive and defensive rebounds led by junior big man Jayden Payne and forcing the Bengals to shoot bad shots, everything started to go in favor of Ursuline. Standout senior Terrence Pankey came alive with seven second quarter points to give the Irish a 29-21 lead going into the half.
The second half was all in favor of the Irish. Will Burney and the West Liberty University commit Pankey knocked down four consecutive three point shots to help Ursuline extend their lead to 44-28 halfway through the third as well as Payne and senior big man Nick Bako continuing to dominate the boards. The Bengals found a little life towards the end of the third behind back-to-back threes from guard Tre Edwards and wing Jaymen Allen. The Irish would go on to outscore the Bengals 21-18 to walk into the fourth with a 50-39 lead.
In the fourth quarter, the Irish shutout the Bengals to extend their lead as far as 20 with a minute left in the game before Coach Salata waived the white flag for Benedictine. Pankey led all scorers with 19 points in the win for the Irish. The Irish stay perfect at 2-0 while Benedictine dropped to 2-2 on the season.
I caught up with Ursuline head coach Kevin Gunther postgame.
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