Gannon drops two to Cal, Slippery Rock

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The Gannon University women’s basketball team lost to California University of Pennsylvania, 83-78, on Feb. 17 in a battle for first place in the PSAC West, and then dropped a 62-53 decision at Slippery Rock Saturday.
The two defeats left the Knights with an overall mark of 16-9 and a 14-7 PSAC record heading into Wednesday’s regular-season finale at home against rival Mercyhurst. Tipoff for the Senior Night matchup is set for 5:30 p.m. at the Hammermill Center.
Seniors Jenny Thies, Morgan Neighbors, Amanda Berchtold, LaShawna Gatewood and Marisa Guyton will be honored for their contributions.
Defending national champion California shot 51 percent against Gannon and snapped a seven-game losing streak in the Hammermill Center.
Thies recorded her seventh consecutive double-double, registering 26 points and 18 rebounds along with a career-high four steals.
Sophomore McKenna Shives added 20 points, bolstered by a career-high six 3-pointers.
Neighbors supplied 10 points and four assists as well.
Shives’ shooting display notwithstanding, the game was played inside, as the two teams combined to score 84 points inside the painted area.
Gannon traveled to Slippery Rock Saturday to play The Rock on their Senior Night. Slippery Rock forced the Knights into 20 turnovers and converted them into 25 points.
The Rock shot 45 percent from the 3-point line, and had a 42-10 advantage in bench points.
Thies continued her streak of double-doubles with 10 points and 17 rebounds, while Neighbors tied all scorers with 23 points, and added seven rebounds. Junior Breanna Brennan grabbed a career-high 11 rebounds, along with seven points.
After Wednesday’s matchup with Mercyhurst, Gannon will find out who it will be hosting for its first-round matchup in the PSAC tournament.
The Knights are currently tied with Edinboro for third place in the PSAC West, two games in back of second-place Indiana (Pa.) and three games ahead of Mercyhurst (13-14, 11-10).
Gannon won the first meeting between the two schools this year, 65-62, on Jan. 20.
Neighbors is the Knights’ top scorer of the season, averaging 15.4 points per game while Thies checks in at 14.1 points and 13 rebounds per game. Shives (12.0 points per game) and Brennan (10.6) also are averaging in double figures for Gannon.
Natalie Piaggesi leads Mercyhurst in scoring with a 14.3 point-per-game average and Angela Heintz is at 13.9.

MAX SENG
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