ERIE, Pa. – Kelsey Tietje recorded a double-double with 22 points and 16 rebounds to lead Defiance past Penn State Behrend 80-65 in the opening game of the Creative Imprints Tip-Off Classic on Friday night at the Junker Center.
The Yellow Jackets (1-0) used a 10-4 run in the last 2:25 of the first quarter to pull ahead 22-14 and never look back for the season-opening victory. Erica Smay recorded 19 points while Ashley Williams drained four three-pointers for 16 points in the win.
For the Lions (0-2), Katie Chess (Bethel Park, PA/Bethel Park) posted a career-high 18 points, nine rebounds and four steals. Erika Woll (Erie, PA/Mercyhurst Prep) added 17 points behind three triples.
Defiance was able to outscore Behrend in each quarter, starting with a 22-14 lead in the first. Liz Martin drained a three-pointer to start the second stanza that gave the Yellow Jackets their first double-digit lead at 25-14. The Lions held their own in the quarter, scoring 11 points and holding Defiance to 12 for a nine-point halftime deficit.
Sadie Zielinski (Erie, PA/Harbor Creek), who finished with three triples, drained back-to-back treys and Fontaine Glenn (West Sunbury, PA/Moniteau) followed with a good jumper to cut the lead to 38-33 in the first 1:37 of the third quarter. The Yellow Jackets got to double-digits once again and held a 55-41 lead heading into the fourth period.
Defiance remained out front and grabbed its largest lead at 73-53 after Sam Ervin tallied the layup and ensuing free throw at the 4:19 mark.
The Yellow Jackets shot 45.3 percent from the floor and held a 47-32 advantage on the boards.
The Lions return to action tomorrow against Bluffton. Game time is 3 p.m.