WINONA LAKE – Grace College’s women’s basketball team was unable to sustain a second quarter lead, falling 71-62 to No. 7 Marian University on Saturday.

The Lady Lancers (15-13, 9-7 CL) suffered a tremendous disadvantage in rebounding; the Knights (23-5, 14-2 CL) held a plus-21 rebounding edge at 41-20. Marian scored 18 points off the offensive glass, compared to just two second-chance points for Grace.

The game started slowly as each team missed their first three shots. Grace’s Kamryn Hostetler made the first field goal of the contest three minutes into the game.

Grace gained an advantage midway through the first quarter. Hostetler and Brooke Sugg buried back-to-back three-pointers, and Hostetler then finished off a fastbreak layup for a 9-6 lead.

The Lady Lancers’ defense kept the Knights off balance. Marian committed six turnovers in the opening quarter, and Grace led 14-8 after an athletic layup from Kyannah Stull.

In the final minute of the quarter, Stull drilled a triple to help Grace to a 17-11 advantage by period’s end.

The Knights proved their ranking with nine unanswered points to start the second quarter, regaining the lead at 20-17.

Grace smartly used a timeout at that juncture to regain composure, and Stull calmly sank a three-pointer to tie the game.

Marian used its height to try to dominate Grace, scoring seven points after offensive rebounds in the quarter. The Knights opened up a six-point lead until the final possession.

Pam Miller swished a jumper from the free throw line as time expired, cutting Marian’s lead to 32-28 at halftime.

Marian held a 24-8 edge in rebounding in the first 20 minutes, grabbing 12 offensive boards. Grace’s two leading scorers (Sugg and Vironnica Drake) were held to three combined points, but Stull’s 11 points and Hostetler’s seven points gave Grace a boost.

Grace did its best to keep pace in the second half, but the Knights had an answer for each Grace run.

Drake and Sugg, who were muted in the first half, came alive after halftime. Sugg scored 12 points in the second half, and Drake added eight more. But the Knights’ offense proved to be too efficient.

Marian shot over 50 percent from the floor in the second half, including a 7-of-13 performance (54 percent) from the arc.

Stull amassed a career night on the offensive end, scoring 19 points for the Lady Lancers. She shot 4 of 7 from beyond the arc and made three steals.

Sugg scored 15 points to go along with two assists and three steals, and Hostetler added 11 points and a pair of steals.

Drake tallied eight points and nine boards.

The Lady Lancers have one week remaining in the regular season. Grace hosts Huntington on Wednesday at 7 p.m. in a game with tremendous implications on the league standings. Grace currently sits in a tie for fifth place in the league, one game behind Huntington for fourth.

Macy Willoughby led Marian with 19 points, while Dejah Cyrus and Macie Lively chipped in with 18 and 13 points, respectively.