ALLIANCE, OH.- The Juniata women's basketball team fell behind by 13 after the first and couldn't climb out of the hole as they lost, 91-67 to Mount Union Friday evening at the McPherson Academic and Athletic Complex in M-Club Tournament.
The Raiders got on the board first prior to Gracie Stauffer (Loysville, Pa. / West Perry) answering with a jumper off a pass from Averie Hess (Jersey Shore, Pa. / Jersey Shore). the Eagles went cold from the field over the next three minutes while the Raiders went on a 9-0 run before Grace Long (Harrisburg, Pa. / Central Dauphin) scored on a putback to try and end the cold streak. But Mount Union kept coming as they tacked on nine more while Juniata scored on a Hess foul shot as the Raiders led, 20-5. Stauffer made two foul shots, Long scored inside on another putback and Hess drilled a three off a feed from Long to make it 20-12 with a minute and a half to go in the first. The Purple Raiders tacked on five more on a pair of free throws and a three as they led 25-12 after one on the strength of five made three-pointers.
Mount Union opened with a layup before Stauffer converted a layup off a pass from Madison Colyer (Newville, Pa. / Big Spring), Colyer nailed a jumper after grabbing a rebound and Larissa Leonard (Three Springs, Pa. / Southern Huntingdon) sunk a three off a pass from Long to bring the Eagles within eight. The Purple Raiders answered with a 7-0 surge over the next two minutes to go back up by 15. A Leonard three momentarily pulled the Eagles back within 13, but the lead slowly expanded the rest of the quarter as Juniata trailed by 17, 43-26 at the half.
Stauffer was making it difficult for Mount Union inside as she rejected eight shots in the first half.
Mount Union kept raining in three's in the third as they made another four as they led by as many as 28 in the third period. At the end of the quarter, they were ahead, 67-43.
Juniata got strong production from their bench in the final frame as Kymiah Carpenter (Baltimore, Md. / Gerstell Academy) tallied seven points while Cassidy Arnold (York, Pa. / Eastern York HS) chipped in with eight points. Both teams tallied 24 points in the final frame as the Mount Union won, 91-67.
Stauffer now sits alone in second all-time in program history with 126 career blocks. Her nine-block performance pushed her past Rachael Anstine and head coach Danny Young-Uhrich who are tied for third with 124. Her nine blocks also tied Katie O'Brian for the most in a single game in school history.
Juniata will take on Case Western at 2:00 tomorrow.