Women’s Team Falls Just Short at United East Finals


Guard Ciani Redd-Howard makes a play during the United East Championship game against Morrisville St. Photo by Sports Information

The Lady Lions’ 2022-23 campaign was one for the ages, but their efforts weren’t quite enough to earn them their first championship in program history. Penn State Harrisburg dropped a back-and-forth affair to Morrisville State by a final score of 47-42 in the United East Championship on Saturday.

It was a disappointing showing on offense, as the Lady Lions put up the fewest points in a game all year in the most crucial game of the season. This included a measly six points in the final quarter, as the offense fizzled down the stretch.

Guards Ciani Redd-Howard and Bailey Oehmig were the team’s lone bright spots in the game, as they each managed a double-double. Redd-Howard tallied 15 points and 13 rebounds in 31 minutes and Oehmig put together 10 points and 14 rebounds in 35 minutes. No other player on the team finished with more than four points or four rebounds, as there wasn’t enough of a team effort to earn the win.

Penn State Harrisburg kept things neck-and-neck throughout most of the game, as they held a 23-21 halftime lead and finished the 3rd quarter down just one. They remained competitive despite a 26.2% shooting performance, as they out-rebounded Morrisville 47-33 and scored 19 second-chance points. However, Morrisville hit clutch buckets in crucial moments, including a pair of threes late in the 3rd, to keep things close. They then did just enough to win in the 4th, as Penn State Harrisburg couldn’t manage a bucket during the second half of the final period. 

Despite strong regular season campaigns, star guards Jayla Galbreath and Kendis Butler couldn’t get going, as they combined for just six points and four turnovers and shot a collective 2 of 18 from the field. 

The defensive effort for Penn State Harrisburg was admirable despite the loss, as they held Morrisville to just 31.9% shooting, and only two Morrsville players scored in double-digits. Nevertheless, the team’s 5-game February win streak came to an end, and they fell to 0-2 against Morrisville on the season. 

Penn State Harrisburg finishes its 2022-23 campaign with a 17-10 record and the #2 conference seed, averaging 68.4 points per game. In February, they outscored opponents by an average of 70-47 per game and reached the United East Championship for the first time in program history. The team now turns its sights to the offseason, as they will be faced with the departure of a number of key players including Galbreath, Butler, and guards Paige Kubalak and Sydney Hemler.