The Lady Lions Topple Wake Forest
The Penn State Lady Lions basketball team returned home to face the Wake Forest Demon Deacons after a trip out west in which they dropped two games at the South Point Shootout.
After two close losses, the Lady Lions were looking to rebound against an embattled Wake Forest team who came into the Bryce Jordan Center on a three-game skid in which they had already lost to two other Big Ten teams.
The Lady Lions came out on top by a score of 68-58, but managed to do so in an unconventional manner. Though a comfortable victory, the Lady Lions shot a measly 29 percent from the floor and 9.5 percent from beyond the arc.
The first quarter saw both teams struggle offensively in what would be an indicator of the general trend of the game. The two teams combined for only 11 made field goals in the quarter and combined to go 0-8 from beyond the three-point line.
Penn State carried a 14-12 lead heading into the second quarter, which would be where they ultimately won the game. They scored 24 points in the quarter while managing to suffocate Wake Forest defensively. The Demon Deacons shot an abysmal 1-15 from the floor and looked the most disjointed they looked in an overall nightmare of an offensive performance.
Penn State carried a 20-point lead into the half with a score of 38-18, which would prove to be too much for the Demon Deacons to overcome in the second half. Though Wake Forest outscored Penn State in both quarters in the second half, the lead the Lady Lions managed to amass in the first half proved to be insurmountable.
There were a few key factors that ultimately earned Penn State the comfortable victory they achieved. Perhaps the most important of these was the tenacity they played with on the glass. Wake Forest came into the game having outrebounded five of their six opponents thus far, but were outrebounded by the Lady Lions tonight. Though the Lady Lions only outrebounded the Demon Deacons by three, they had managed to beat the Demon Deacons in their strongest area of the game and strip them of their supremacy in the one aspect they usually control. De’Janae Boykin set the tone with her aggressive attitude on the glass, managing to rack up 11 rebounds, and her teammates followed suit with five more pulling in at least five rebounds.
Possibly just as important was the return of Teniya Page. Page has been struggling with a leg injury and is still quite a ways away from being fully healthy by her own admission, but she still managed to be quite effective. Page technically made her return in Vegas where she scored 19 points over the two games, but she was playing a much more limited role. Tonight, she managed to play 27 minutes in which she scored 21 points in what was a wonderful way to reintroduce herself to the home crowd this season. She still had a noticeable limp, but managed to prove that she is well-rounded enough as a player to still do what she had to do without her full athletic arsenal. While she managed to lead her team to victory tonight, the progression of her health will certainly be something Lady Lions fans will be waiting on as she continues to heal.
Overall, Coquese Washington seemed pleased with how her team was able to respond to some of the curveballs thrown at them during the game. She noted that this was the first time her team had really seen a press all year and she liked how her team responded to her adjustments.
“We can be tough when we want to be, we just need to do it more consistently,” Washington said.
This is certainly something Coquese Washington and the fans will be looking for as the Lady Lions continue to gear up for conference play.
Patrick Murphy is a freshman majoring in broadcast journalism. To contact him, email firstname.lastname@example.org.