Basketball teams at Penn State DuBois continue playoff push this week

Penn State DuBois senior guard Jaiquil Johnson drives the lane and attempts a layup during a recent basketball game at the PAW Center, on the campus of Penn State DuBois.

Penn State DuBois senior guard Jaiquil Johnson drives the lane and attempts a layup during a recent basketball game at the PAW Center, on the Penn State DuBois campus.

Credit: Penn State

DuBOIS, Pa. — Passing the midpoint in January means that the men’s and women’s basketball teams at Penn State DuBois are starting down the stretch run as they both continue their push toward the Penn State University Athletic Conference (PSUAC) playoffs. The final full week in January and the entire month of February will see both the Nittany Lions and Lady Lions play a busy schedule leading into the postseason.

For the women’s basketball team at Penn State DuBois, they returned from the semester break on fire, winning the first three games they played in 2024, and heading into their game against Penn State Greater Allegheny on Jan. 16, the Lady Lions were riding a four-game winning streak dating back to December. Making the trip to Wunderly Gym to visit Greater Allegheny, a closely contested matchup ensued. At the end of the game, an overtime game at that, Penn State DuBois fell short to Greater Allegheny by a final score of 81-77.

The Lady Lions showcased a strong performance, led by standout player Natalie Bowser's impressive 27-point contribution. Bowser dominated both ends of the court, securing 12 rebounds and contributing seven assists. Despite the collective efforts for the Lady Lions, including notable performances from Shannon Shaw (18 points, nine rebounds) and Tara Leamer (16 points, nine rebounds), they faced a resilient opponent.

The game witnessed a thrilling overtime period, with both teams locked in a fierce battle. However, DuBois struggled to maintain its momentum, ultimately succumbing to Greater Allegheny's determined offense.

Despite the loss, the Lady Lions demonstrated resilience, putting up a strong fight against a competitive Greater Allegheny squad. The game was marked by intense moments, showcasing the determination and skill of both teams.

Penn State DuBois was scheduled to host Villa Maria on Friday. However, that game was canceled, and a rescheduled date has not yet been announced.

The men’s basketball team also made the trip down to Wunderly Gym to face Penn State Greater Allegheny on Jan. 16. In a hard-fought basketball contest, the Nittany Lions fell short as Greater Allegheny claimed victory with a final score of 107-85.

DuBois showcased a balanced offensive effort, with Kaleb Pryor leading the charge with an impressive 25 points. Jaiquil Johnson and Beau Verdill contributed significantly, adding 18 and 10 points, respectively. Despite their offensive efforts, the Nittany Lions struggled to contain the relentless attack from Greater Allegheny.

Despite the loss, the game was special for Johnson as he reached the 1,000-point milestone for his playing career at Penn State DuBois. He became the 10th player in Penn State DuBois men’s basketball history to reach 1,000 points and the first to do so since 2018.

The Nittany Lions returned home to the PAW Center on Friday when they hosted Villa Maria. The team was looking to even the season series after DuBois fell to Villa in the opening game of the season. In a thrilling showdown, Penn State DuBois secured the win, 97-81. The home team's dynamic performance showcased its prowess on both ends of the court, leaving the crowd in awe.

From the opening tip-off, the Nittany Lions set the tone, establishing a slim lead in the first half with a score of 50-43. Ashton Fortson, Jordin Sommers, Johnson, Pryor and Verdill spearheaded the offensive charge, demonstrating remarkable accuracy from the field and beyond the arc.

The second half witnessed an even more dominant display by DuBois. Their defensive efforts, led by Sommers and Verdill, limited Villa Maria's scoring opportunities. The Nittany Lions capitalized on turnovers, scoring 29 points off Villa Maria's mistakes.

Pryor showcased his playmaking skills with seven assists, orchestrating the offense efficiently. The rebounding efforts of Verdill and Sommers secured crucial second-chance opportunities, contributing to DuBois' overall dominance on the boards.

The Nittany Lions now look forward to carrying this momentum into future matchups as they continue their pursuit of success in the competitive basketball season.

Both the men’s and women’s teams will return to action this week at the PAW Center when the host Penn State Beaver on Wednesday. The women’s game is scheduled to tip off at 6 p.m. with the men’s game following at 8 p.m. The Nittany Lions and Lady Lions will then travel to face Penn State Mont Alto on Saturday in a divisional matchup in the PSUAC. The Lady Lions will start the day of basketball off at 1 p.m. and the Nittany Lions will play after, starting at 3 p.m.

For complete athletic schedules, including any weather-related changes, visit the Penn State DuBois athletic website.