Youngsville's Riley Robinault. File photo by Steve Younger.

Fantastic Freshmen: Rookies Steinberg, Robinault Steal the Show as Eisenhower Tops Youngsville

December 7, 2022

RUSSELL, Pa. – In the first meeting of their varsity careers, Clara Steinberg and Riley Robinault put on a show, combining for 44 points. In the end, Steinberg led Eisenhower to a 53-49 win over Youngsville.

The Knights jumped out to a big lead, 18-7 after the first quarter and 32-16 at halftime, but the Eagles’ defense clamped down in the third quarter to cut the lead to 38-33 heading to the fourth.

Rewatch the game:

“I think (the win) gives us a lot more confidence and will really help us going forward because we’re a young team,” Steinberg said.

See Steinberg’s full postgame interview:

Eisenhower pushed the lead back up to eight points early in the fourth quarter, but Youngsville continued to chip away and cut it back down to five midway through the frame.

The two freshmen, Steinberg and Robinault went back and forth all game long. Perhaps no sequence better illustrated that than when Eisenhower had the ball under its own basket with 4:07 to play.

Lilly Smyth got the ball off the inbound and shot a three. The shot missed, but Steinberg made a leaping save to keep the ball alive. After the save, the Knights passed the ball around the perimeter until Laney Font tried to hit Steinberg down near the baseline. The pass was a touch out of reach, but Steinberg was able to corral it along the baseline, dribble to the perimeter, and knocked down a three.

Steinberg then stole the inbound pass, but got tripped up trying to get to the rim and lost control. Robinault got the ball, raced down the court, nearly had the ball poked away, regathered, and banked home a shot.

See the sequence:

A little over a minute later, the Eagles cut the lead down to four. The game stayed closely within that margin until the final 38 seconds.

Zaylee Cressley missed a free throw, but Olivia Darling got the rebound and put in a layup to cut the Eisenhower lead to 50-48.

Steinberg was fouled on the ensuing possession and went 2-2 from the line to put the Knights back ahead by four.

Both teams hit one more free throw in the final seconds for the 53-49 margin.

Robinault finished with 20 points. Melea Jenkins had 10 points and Cressley finished with five points.

Steinberg had 24 points to lead the Knights. Smyth had eight points and Marino had six.

Eisenhower won the junior varsity game, 42-26.

Keeley Alcorn led the Knights with 10 points. Lexi Pascuzzi had eight, and Kaitlyn Sleeman, Caroline Smyth, and Lilly Smyth each had six.

Robinault led the Eagles with eight points.

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