CLARION, Pa. – The Clarion women’s basketball team was unable to dig their way out of an early deficit, dropping a 75-55 decision to the Gannon Golden Knights in Tippin Gymnasium. The loss drops Clarion to 3-13 and 1-9 in the PSAC. Gannon, who has won seven of their last eight games, improves to 12-4 and 8-2 in the PSAC.

Ke’Ariah Massiah was the top scorer for Clarion, logging 13 points on 6-of-9 shooting. Sharpshooter Emily Brown pitched in 12 on 4-of-10 shooting from beyond the arc, and Jada Smith provided seven rebounds to go with six points.

Gannon shot 56 percent from the field and 56 percent from three point range, making for a tough day at the office for the Golden Eagles. Tori Obenrader led the Golden Knights with a double-double, scoring 24 points on 9-of-13 shooting to go along with 14 boards. Chelsea Rourke added 14 at a perfect 6-of-6 shooting, while Sydney Mitchell had seven points and seven assists.

The Golden Knights jumped out to an 11-2 run in the first five minutes of the contest, with five different Gannon players notching buckets. Gannon boosted their lead to 19-6 at the end of the first quarter, concluding with a buzzer-beating three by Sam Pirosko, who had five points in the period.

Clarion’s offensive struggles continued early on in the second quarter, and Gannon opened up a 20-point advantage over the Golden Eagles. Jada Smith took charge in the paint, scoring four points during a 13-6 Clarion run to end the second quarter. That cut the Gannon lead to 13 points heading into the locker room. Smith also had six rebounds in the first half.

The Golden Eagles continued their offensive rhythm in the third quarter, sprinting out to a 6-3 run to start the second half. The Golden Eagles’ third quarter push was offset by Obenrader, who scored 15 points. Massiah countered with eight points in the back-and-forth stanza.

Clarion pulled to within 15 after Celeste Ryman stole an inbounds pass and nailed a three, but the Golden Knights were able to maintain their lead through the fourth quarter.

Clarion travels to Edinboro on Saturday for a 1 p.m. contest before facing Bloomsburg next week at home.