Clarion Women’s Basketball Set for First PSAC Playoff Appearance Under Ashley Monday at Mercyhurst

ERIE, Pa. (EYT) – Fresh of clinching its first winning season since 2010, the Clarion University women’s basketball team prepares for its first PSAC Playoff berth under third-year head coach Jana Ashley and its first since 2013 at 5:30 p.m. Monday at Mercyhurst.

The Golden Eagles, who finished 15-13 overall and 12-10 in the PSAC West, the first winning regular season since going 14-13 in 2010 and the first winning conference mark since 2008 (18-9, 8-4 PSAC West).

Mercyhurst (22-6, 17-5) is easily enjoying its best season since joining the PSAC in 2009 and, in fact, have finished over .500 for the first time since going 15-12 in 2000. It is the first home playoff game for the Lakers since the 1995 season. It is their first 20-win since 1995 when they were 24-6.

This is the third meeting of the season between the teams. Mercyhurst won the first two meetings, 67-59 Jan. 6 at Clarion and 90-50 Feb. 4 at Mercyhurst.

The Golden Eagles are led by Tyra Polite’s 16.1 ppg, while Jordan Bekelja adds 11.3 ppg and 3.3 apg. Amesha Harden-Pullium chips 9.9 ppg with Delrike Jones-Carey adding 9.0 ppg and a team-best 7.4 rpg and Taylor Moltz, a Venango Catholic graduate, adding 6.7 ppg and Jen Straw 6.0 ppg and 6.2 rpg.

Natalie Piaggesi leads Mercyhurst in several categories including points per game (16.5), field-goal percentage (.581), blocks (2.0) and free-throw percentage (.809). She leads the PSAC in blocks while rating second in field-goal percentage, fifth in scoring and seventh in free-throw percentage.

Angela Heintz leads Mercyhurst in rebounds (7.2), assists (6.4) and steals (1.7). She averages 15.0 points. Heintz leads the PSAC in assists and ranks eighth in scoring.

Jalin Steel has an average of 10.6 points per game for the Lakers.

Admission to the game is $10 for adults and $5 for students. There is free admission for students from member institutions with valid I.D. PSAC passes are accepted.

The winner will visit the No. 2 seed in the PSAC West, IUP, Wednesday for a 5:30 p.m. contest.

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