Lady Lions Drop Exhibition to Cedarville
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. – The Penn State Lady Lions were defeated in the first game of their season in an exhibition against the Cedarville Yellow Jackets by the score of 59-53.
The Lady Lions played without their 2016-17 leading scorer, Teniya Page, because of an ankle injury suffered in early August at the Team U23 USA Women's National Team Camp. This was on top of losing seniors Peyton Whitted, Sierra Moore and Kaliyah Mitchell from last year.
Penn State held a six-point lead at the half due to an impressive performance by sophomore guard Jaida Travascio-Green. The sophomore came out firing, as she had 11 points in the first quarter alone. Travascio-Green went 3-4 from three-point range and 4-6 from the field in the first quarter.
Travascio-Green was on the floor a ton throughout the game, as she led the Lady Lions in minutes played with 36. She led all scorers with 20 points. Penn State head coach Coquese Washington expects this trend to continue throughout the season.
Washington stated that Travascio-Green, “is a very steady performer for us,” and “she’ll be on the floor a lot.”
Amari Carter made an early exit in the first quarter due to an injury to her hand. This left Penn State without both of their main leaders, Teniya Page and Amari Carter.
“I haven’t spoken with the doctor, so I’m not sure what the status of Amari is,” Washington said.
The second half is when Cedarville came to life. The Yellow Jackets outscored the Lady Lions 20-10 in the third quarter. This included a 12-0 run. Cedarville’s main source of offense was from junior guard Baylee Bennett. Bennett caught fire from three in the second half, shooting 4 for 6 behind the arc in that time frame. Bennett wound up leading Cedarville in scoring, compiling 18 points on the day.
The Lady Lions’ defense struggled to control the damage during the second half. According to Coquese Washington, this was due to a lack of communication.
“When you have so many young players out there, first game, a lot of nerves, a lot of hesitation, a lot of uncertainty and that led to really quiet defense. Quiet defense isn’t the best defense,” Washington said.
Washington also went on to say that her team will learn from these mistakes.
Penn State forward De’Janae Boykin proved that she would be involved heavily on both offense and defense in her return to the Lady Lions after a 2016-2017 season that was cut short by injury. Boykin led the Lady Lions with nine rebounds on the day, but also struggled to hold onto the ball as she led all players with six turnovers.
Cedarville forward Breanne Watterworth was the leading rebounder in the game with 10. Watterworth did things well of the stat sheets as well, such as setting several crucial screens and being the most physical player on the court.
The Lady Lions struggled in transition for most of the game. Eight of the ten fast-break points they scored were in the first quarter. Washington believes they have a lot to fix in these opportunities.
“We have to have a little bit better decision making in transition,” Washington said. “We are playing with a lot of freshmen and sophomores out there, just figuring out how to do that in game situations, as opposed to practice.”
Penn State looks to rebound from a rather sour loss in this exhibition game when they take-on the Siena Saints next Friday, November 10, in Happy Valley.
Christian Katt is a sophomore majoring in broadcast journalism. To contact him, email email@example.com.