FORT WAYNE, Ind. - Riley Ott and Shayla Sellers both had double-digit points in Purdue Fort Wayne's 72-57 loss to Cleveland State on Saturday (Jan. 2).
Ott led the Mastodons with 15 points and Sellers was close behind with 12 points while adding five assists, four rebounds and two blocks.
The Mastodons' defense came out strong from the get-go, forcing Cleveland State into seven turnovers in the first quarter. Sierra Bell went on a 5-0 run on her own after Purdue Fort Wayne started down 5-0. She converted a traditional 3-point play then buried a deep jumper. The 'Dons finished the quarter on a 5-0 push as Ott buried a triple and Sellers knocked in a mid-range jumper from the left side. This gave Purdue Fort Wayne a 13-12 lead.
Purdue Fort Wayne held Preseason All-Horizon League selection Mariah White without a field goal attempt in the opening 10 minutes of play.
Ott scored points seven, eight and nine in the second quarter by converting a 3-point play after a hard foul in the paint. Sellers had six of her 12 points by the halftime break. She broke into double-figures midway through the third quarter with a spot up jumper from the Horizon League logo in the paint. This cut the CSU lead to eight.
A few minutes later, Rylie Parker knocked a 3-pointer from the corner and forced a Cleveland State turnover next to the Mastodon bench, after which Hannah Hess scored a 3-pointer from the right wing.
It was the fourth quarter when Cleveland State extended the lead out of reach. In the first five minutes of the quarter, the Vikings went on an 11-4 run where they hit four of their five shots. The 'Dons responded with a 4-0 stretch where Margo Thompson and Ott each hit a jumper. From the 5:00 mark to end of the game, Purdue Fort Wayne held Cleveland State to 2 of 7 shooting. Amellia Bromenschenkel scored her first career bucket with 0:56 left on a jumper just outside the paint.
In the first start of her career, Aubrey Stupp recorded five points on 2 of 4 shooting. Thompson tied her career-high with five points. The Mastodons shot 42 percent from the floor, which was a season high.
Purdue Fort Wayne falls to 0-8, 0-6 in the Horizon League while Cleveland State moves to .500 at 2-2 overall and in the League. Next up for the Mastodons is a road trip to Milwaukee for a pair of games on Friday and Saturday (Jan. 8-9). Milwaukee is 9-1 and only has a 2-point loss to Bowling Green on its résumé.