Hazleton, Pa. - The Lady Lions opened their season Tuesday night in the Dr. Thomas M. Cacesse Gymnasium with their annual matchup with Luzerne County Community College. Senior McKenzie Prutsman (Jasper, Ny.) and sophomore Kendra Pfeil (Hazleton, Pa.) combined for 54 points to power the Hazleton offense to an 88-71 wire to wire victory over the Trailblazers.
A pair of triples by Pfeil and a Prutsman layup gave the Lions an 8-0 lead in the first two minutes of action and Hazleton quickly extended that cushion to double figures. Luzerne cut the lead back eight points in the second quarter following a Lisa Radziak three-point basket but Hazleton would close out the half in fine fashion. Senior Katie Oldziewjewski (Wilkes-Barre, Pa.) would knock in three buckets down the stretch as Hazleton went on a 14-5 run to finish the second period and enter the break with 49-32 advantage.
Radziak would try to get the Trailblazers back in the game with long distance attempt, firing 25 shots from beyond the arc and connecting on seven for the game. After leading by as many as 23 points early in the fourth period, the Trailblazers battled back into the game with 16-4 run capped by a Bryden Peters triple, but Pfeil answered immediately with her seventh three-pointer of the game to squash the rally. Sophomore Lauren Pataki (Hazleton, Pa.) would heat up in the final minutes, scoring eight of her 16 total points on the night in the final minutes to sure up the victory.
Pfeil and Prutsman had their way with the Trailblazer defense all night to post stellar night's in the box score. Pfeil's seven triple's led to a team high 31 points which was a career best for the sophomore who also added five assists, six steals and a pair of blocked shots. Equally steady was Prutsman who tossed in 21 points from the field, seven rebounds and led the squad with six assists. Junior Mekenzie Wolfe (Grove City, Pa.) and sophomore Devon Keiper (Wilkes-Barre, Pa.) cleaned up on the glass for Hazleton with 16 and 11 rebounds respectively.
Next up: Hazleton continues non-conference play with a trip to Wilkes University on Saturday, November 10 for a 7:00 p.m. tip off.