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Photo Gallery - Bench Press Max Out
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - While the Nittany Lion
football team is just 13 days from returning to the practice field for the
start of spring drills, the group is not thinking about putting the pads back
on quite yet.
Led be Director of Performance Enhancement Dwight Galt, the football squad is
participating in a three-day physical testing period to measure the progress it
has made since winter conditioning began in January and to set a baseline leading
into the summer workout season.
The Nittany Lions kicked off the testing week on Monday by running the 40-yard
dash inside Holuba Hall and maxing out on the bench press in the weight
room. Tuesday's testing features
vertical testing, the shuttle run, broad jump and the power clean max out in
the weight room. The testing will
culminate on Wednesday with a squatting max out session in the weight room.
"You always want to do the 40s first. We
only do them once a year, and you want to get a really good time," Galt
said. "We always do that first. After that, we did the bench press. Then, we have all of our movement stuff. We have our pro shuttle, our vertical and our
broad jump. Then we have our power
clean. On Wednesday, we do our squat. Because once you do the squat you are kind of
done...The thing that I really believe in is that when they test, it is actually
a training day for us."
The testing period is evaluated by something Galt calls a "T-Score". The T-Score assigns values for each of the
events during the testing. The scale
ranges from 1-100, with 75 the number each athlete strives for on each
event. Galt said that 75 or better is a
good score, with a 90-100 score in the range of a higher draft pick in the
NFL. The score for each event is totaled
before taking the average. The final
average is the number Galt hopes to see at 75 or higher.
have very high expectations here of what that T-Score will be," Galt said.
Roughly eight weeks into the winter conditioning
program, Galt is confident in where the team is at during the final week of
strength and conditioning before the student-athletes are off for spring break
next week. The team has lifted three
days a week and conditioned during the early-morning hours the other two days.
"I feel good about where we are right now," Galt said. "One thing you are going to find out about me
is that we are an all-year around go (group).
We're going to lift on Friday after the winter workout. Then, we will take basically nine days off
(for spring break). Then they come
back. And the spring ball weight
training cycle is no different than the offseason. It is the same thing. We're going to crank all through spring
Where has Galt seen the most progress since he arrived on campus in mid-January?
"I think they've done a great job with strength and power," Galt said. "I had six really good speed workouts before
we started our winter workouts...We've made really good progress there, but we
have a ways to go (through the summer).
But from a strength and power standpoint, we're basically in our eighth
week. I think they've done a really good
job increasing that area of gain with a good lean mass. We've put some good size on the team. We've set some really good body weight
The winter workout period is often a time where the team leaders for the
upcoming season emerge. The players
battle through adversity in the weight room and during the conditioning tests,
setting up an opportunity for the players to establish themselves as leaders. While Galt mentioned a few names as guys who
have evolved as leaders for the 2014 season, he said that the thing that
impresses him most about the Nittany Lions is their workmanlike approach to
"We have great leadership," Galt said.
"The first week, we had no music (in the weight room). You've got to earn the music. Obviously, they've earned it because we are
cleaning our ears out (laughter). They
had to earn that, but by in large, these guys are typically just roll the
sleeves up, work and don't say much.
That's one thing that Coach Franklin and I'm working strongly is to get
them to be more vocal. But they work so
stinking hard that you don't need the motivation. They are very motivated."
The Nittany Lions are counting down the days before the start of spring
practice, but they have an eye on the bigger picture. The 2014 season is just around the corner,
and they have one thing in mind.
"We want to be the hardest working team in the country. No doubt.
We don't want anyone to be our peer in that area. That's what we always strive for," Galt said.
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By Samantha DelRosso, GoPSUsports.com Student Staff Writer
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - It took the Penn State men's gymnastics team only five minutes
to achieve a new season-high on the floor exercise on Saturday night. Each
routine, about a minute long each, showcased different skills to help the
Nittany Lions defeat No. 5 Minnesota with a season-high final score of 440.200.
The difference in the floor exercise from the team's previous meet
against Illinois to the meet against Minnesota was not the two-week long break
in between the meets, but the landings. Head coach Randy Jepson said the floor
is an event where the gymnasts must exhibit great landings. And sophomore
Alexis Torres did just that.
"Alexis only took one hop in his whole routine. It was outstanding.
That's what you look for," Jepson said. "We have been focusing a lot on those
landings. We started to see [sticking landings] tonight. Floor all around is
much better in terms of our landings."
Torres, who placed first in the floor exercise, hit his season-high on
the floor with a 15.650.
"I was just trying to stick everything. I wanted to do my best. Tonight,
I did my best score. I just go out there and do it and have fun," Torres said.
Torres said he feels comfortable with his current routine. For now, he
wants to work on being consistent with is routine; not changing anything and
continuing what he did in the meet against Minnesota.
"The routine that I have and the score that I'm scoring is pretty clean
and is pretty high, the highest I've been. In the future, I am going to work on
it, but now, where we are, it is about constant routines and nothing about
changing," Torres said.
As the fourth man in the five-man line up, Torres' has the opportunity
to watch his teammates before competing in the floor exercise. He chooses not
to. Instead, he tries to focus what he is going to do in his routine.
Junior Matt Felleman, however, does the opposite. As the third gymnast
in the lineup, he watches the teammates that compete before him.
"After they hit a good set I get pretty excited. If they mess up, I know
I have to set up and put a good performance on," Felleman said.
Felleman, who tied for second place on the floor routine, said he felt
his routine was the cleanest set he has hit all season. He recorded a
season-high score of 15.150, but noted that there is room for improvement.
"[I want to fix] the landings. I'm going to make sure I don't take any
silly hops here and there," Felleman said.
The meet was the final competition in Rec Hall for the seniors on the
team. Although it is an emotional moment for the four seniors, they know that
there is more work to be done.
"For me, [the fact that is what the last time competing in Rec Hall]
hasn't really sunk in. We still have a job to do," senior Wasef Burbar said.
"We still have a lot of meets left and most importantly, Big Tens and NCAAs, so
it definitely has not sunk in. I'm just
trying to stay focused on what's to come."
Jepson was pleased with the performance by the team and glad that it was
a great final home meet for the seniors. The team has faced two "solid" teams
back-to-back, Illinois and Minnesota, and Jepson said the team has stepped up and
responded well to adversity.
Good health helped the team beat Minnesota 440.200 to 431.500, as well. Many
of the gymnasts who have suffered from injuries this season made an appearance
"I like the heart I see and I was happy to see us get a little healthier
and get most of our line up to what it needed to be," Jepson said.
This weekend, the Nittany Lions will travel to Puerto Rico to compete in
the home country of Torres, Néstor Rodriguez and Ismael Sanabria.
PARK, Pa. - The 2014 Penn State wrestling team preps for
the Big Ten Championships at Wisconsin (March 8-9). Head coach Cael Sanderson, senior David Taylor and Ed Ruth as well as freshman Zain Retherford share their thoughts
heading into the tournament.
By Michael Renahan, GoPSUsports.com Student Staff Writer
MINNEAPOLIS, Minn. - For the first time this season, PJ Musico led
the Nittany Lions out of the tunnel and onto the ice. He was making his first
start of the season, and he was doing so against the No. 2 team in the nation.
It was bright lights for the goal and Musico answered the call time
and time again throughout the game.
Penn State was coming off a 5-1 loss the night before and was
anxious to find some momentum early. Luckily for head coach Guy Gadowsky and
his squad, Musico was up for the challenge and led the Nittany Lions well.
He stopped 35 of 37 shots, including several key saves to keep the
Nittany Lions within striking distance during the third period. Unfortunately,
the team fell to the Gophers, 2-1.
Musico, however, had one of the best games of his Penn State
career. The junior goaltender has only appeared in five games this season, but
is always ready for the challenge. Gadowsky is constantly praising how prepared
the netminder is and he showcased his talent on Saturday.
"He's a battler," Gadowsky said of Musico. "The guys play hard for
him. He is an absolute battler. I thought he looked great and he made some huge
saves and kept us in the game. Then we scored, and I actually thought we sort
of tilted the ice a little bit. Minnesota is an excellent hockey team and I am
not saying they didn't deserve to win...but I thought we could have won, as well."
The Orange, Calif., native came out strong, making 12 saves in the
first period. Every time the Gophers appeared to have an open look on net,
Musico would change direction to make the save.
His solid play continued well into the second and third periods
before Minnesota took the lead just over six minutes into the final stanza.
"I thought PJ really gave us a chance to win tonight," said
Gadowsky. "I'm really proud of how he came in here [Mariucci Arena] in his
first start this year, against the second ranked team in the nation and handled
himself. I thought he was excellent for us tonight."
The Gophers were the first team to strike Saturday night when they
scored just over 13 minutes into the first period. That lead didn't last long,
as the Nittany Lions responded quickly when Curtis Loik registered his fifth
goal of the season.
Defensemen Connor Varley hit Loik with a long pass and the sophomore
snatched the puck and was able to maneuver his way around the Gopher defense to
get a good look on net. His wrist shot found the back of the net past Michael
Shibrowski to tie the game, 1-1.
After the Loik goal, Musico was outstanding the rest of the way.
The second period went scoreless, thanks in large part to the athleticism of
Musico and the tenacity of the Nittany Lions' defense.
As a team, the Nittany Lions backed up their goalie well. They
registered 20 blocked shots and continued to keep up the solid pressure on the offensive
half of the ice, launching 27 shots. The opportunities were there for Penn
State, but the pucks just did not find the back of the net.
This is the second series this season that the NIitany Lions have
battled well against the highly ranked Gophers. The last time these two teams
met in Pegula Ice Arena, Penn State lost the first game by just one goal.
Playing hard against the No. 2 team in the nation is an ode to how much this
team has grown over the season.
The Nittany Lions are back at home for the final two regular season
series of 2013-14. First, No. 6 Wisconsin comes to town on March 7-8 and this
team knows that they count on a solid effort in net from whoever leads them out
of the tunnel.
"I was really happy tonight," Gadowsky said. "We didn't play our
game at times and we were dictated upon a little bit in both games, but we had
a tremendous effort tonight. We didn't sit back and we generated more good
chances and, at the same time, we limited their chances. I thought we played an
excellent hockey game."
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. -
The postseason push for Penn State teams in March is on.
The first weekend of
the month kicked off in fine fashion with two teams tallying Big Ten championships
to go along with an individual being named the top performer at the Big Ten Men's
Swimming & Diving Championships.
In dramatic fashion, the Nittany Lion women's track & field team notched
its third conference crown at the Big Ten Indoor Championships on Saturday
afternoon. It all came down to the
4x400-meter relay with the Lions leading Michigan by just half a point heading
into the final event. The Lions stormed
to a victory in the relay to seal the title.
"The women were outstanding today," said Director of Track &
Field and Head Coach Beth Alford-Sullivan. "Michigan pressed us hard
throughout the weekend, but we kept our composure and competed great. This is a
championship win to remember."
Roughly 45 minutes after the women's track & field team was crowned champion,
the Lady Lion basketball team finished off a 77-62 triumph over Michigan to
clinch a share of its third-straight Big Ten regular season title. The Lady Lions join Ohio State and Iowa as
the only programs to win three or more consecutive Big Ten titles.
"It's the first time in program history that we have won three Big Ten
Championships in a row," head coach Coquese Washington said. "When this program
has such a storied legacy, to be able to do something that this program hasn't
done before, it's pretty hard. The program has accomplished so much and for
this class and team to do something that sets them apart, that's really cool."
In the pool, sophomore Shane Ryan capped off a strong outing for the Nittany
Lion men's swimming team by becoming the first Penn State men's swimmer to be
named Swimmer of the Big Ten Championships on Saturday. Ryan broke the Big Ten record in the 100m
freestyle, topping a mark set by former Northwestern Wildcat and 2012 London
Olympics medalist Matt Grevers. Ryan is the
first Nittany Lion to win two individual gold medals at the Big Ten
Championships. His efforts powered the
men's team to fifth in the team standings.
The men's team's performance came one week after the Nittany Lion
women's swimming & diving team took third at the Big Ten Women's
With a standout weekend in the books, the Nittany Lions are full steam ahead in
postseason mode beginning on Friday when the Lady Lions kick off play as the
No. 1 seed at the Big Ten Women's Basketball Tournament in Indianapolis. Penn State will meet either Northwestern or
Ohio State at noon (BTN) on Friday. The
semifinals take place on Saturday, with the tournament final on Sunday in
Bankers Life Fieldhouse.
On Saturday, the three-time defending NCAA champion Penn State wrestling team
will begin its Big Ten title defense at the Kohl Center in Madison, Wis. Head coach Cael Sanderson and the Nittany
Lions will look for their fourth-straight Big Ten title over the weekend. Additionally, seniors Ed Ruth and David
Taylor have an opportunity to become Penn State's first four-time Big Ten
individual champions. Junior Matt Brown
is the third Nittany Lion in the lineup with a Big Ten individual title. The Big Ten finals will air live on BTN
Sunday at 2 p.m.
There are several marquee events on the horizon following the action this
weekend. The 2014 Big Ten Men's
Basketball Tournament is slated to begin on March 13 in Indianapolis. The Nittany Lion men's hoops team will finish
off its regular season this week with games at Northwestern and Minnesota. The Lions will learn their seed for the
tournament on Sunday.
The track and field squads will also be in action during the third weekend in
March. Penn State will travel to
Albaquerque for the NCAA Indoor Championships on March 14-15.
Head coach James Franklin and the Nittany Lion football team will wrap up
winter conditioning this week in preparation for the start of spring practice
on March 17. The Nittany Lions will
practice 15 times before the Blue-White Game on April 12 (1:30 p.m.).
The fourth weekend of March will feature no fewer than six postseason events
for Penn State teams. The No. 1
wrestling team will begin its NCAA title defense on March 20 in Oklahoma City
at the 2014 NCAA Wrestling Championships.
The finals will take place on March 22.
The ESPN family of networks will televise all six of the NCAA Wrestling
In Happy Valley, the women's gymnastics team plays host to the Big Ten Championships
in Rec Hall on March 22. Across campus,
the Bryce Jordan Center is slated to host the first and second rounds of the
NCAA Women's Basketball Championship.
Games are slated for 12:30 p.m. and 3 p.m. on March 23 and 7 p.m. on
Out of town, the first Big Ten Hockey Tournament will take place in Saint Paul,
Minn., beginning on March 20. The NCAA
Women's Swimming & Diving Championships begin on March 20 in Minneapolis,
as well. The Penn State fencing teams
also kick of NCAA Championships competition in Columbus on March 20.
The month will wrap up with a weekend featuring the NCAA Men's Swimming &
Diving Championships, which begin on March 27 in Austin, Texas. The Big Ten Men's Gymnastics Championships
begin on March 28 in Lincoln, Neb.
With two titles already in hand, it will be a busy month ahead for Penn State
teams competing in postseason competition.
Stay tuned for complete coverage of the postseason push on
Key Dates Ahead in March
March 7 - Noon (BTN) - Lady
Lions vs. Ohio State/Northwestern (Big Ten Tournament Quarterfinals -
March 8 - 11 a.m./6 p.m. - Big Ten
Wrestling Championships (Madison, Wis.)
March 9 - 12/2 p.m. (BTN) - Big Ten Wrestling Championships (Madison, Wis.)
March 13-16 - Big Ten Men's
Basketball Tournament (Indianapolis)
March 14-15 - NCAA Indoor Track
& Field Championships (Albuquerque, N.M.)
March 17 - First Day of Spring
March 20-22 - NCAA Wrestling
Championships (Oklahoma City, Okla.); NCAA Fencing Championships (Columbus,
Ohio); NCAA Women's Swimming & Diving Championships (Minneapolis, Minn.);
Big Ten Men's Hockey Tournament (Saint Paul, Minn.)
March 22 - 12/5 p.m. - Big Ten
Women's Gymnastics Championships (University Park, Pa.)
March 23 - 12:30/3 p.m. - NCAA
Women's Basketball First Round (University Park, Pa.)
March 25 - 7 p.m. - NCAA Women's
Basketball Second Round (University Park, Pa.)
March 27-29 - NCAA Men's Swimming
& Diving Championships (Austin, Texas)
March 28-29 - Big Ten Men's
Gymnastics Championships (Lincoln, Neb.)
Tony Mancuso on Twitter @GoPSUTony
By Mike Esse, GoPSUsports.com Student Staff Writer
PARK, Pa. - To put it simply, Senior Day couldn't have gone any better for Penn
State's four seniors.
Maggie Lucas, Talia East, Dara Taylor and Ariel Edwards all were double figure
scorers on a day where they were honored with friends and family in attendance
as the team claimed at least a share its third consecutive Big Ten title with a
77-62 win Sunday over Michigan.
Head coach Coquese Washington said she didn't have any worries coming into the
game about her players being emotional and that affecting their play. She said
her seniors were ready to play and enjoy the moment.
"They weren't worried about getting emotional," Washington said. "The seniors
were ready to go, they were prepared to not be emotional and enjoy the moment."
Edwards led the Lady Lions with 21 points on 8-for-12 shooting from the field
while Lucas, East and Taylor added 17, 16 and 11 points respectively.
Talia East's description of the afternoon? One word: awesome.
"It was awesome," East said after her career high point total on
Senior Day. "I was just so proud the entire game, just watching everyone play
their game and play it well. You can't ask for anything more. I was just so
Penn State had control of the game from start to finish as they shot 53.8
percent from the field, missed just one free throw on 19 attempts and collected
seven blocks and 11 steals.
The group of seniors combined for 65 of the team's 77 points; epitomizing their
leadership during their time at Penn State in their last regular season home
"They played like seniors," said Washington. "They played the way you want
seniors to play on senior night. They came together and all had
really good nights and played well for us, which all culminated with a Big Ten
Championship. It's a great way to go out."
That was expected of Washington's four leaders that made sure a team of seven
freshmen didn't miss a beat coming off of two straight conference titles
heading into the season.
"They had a very tough task this year, probably the hardest one of the three
championships because of the change in the team," Washington said. "It was such
a new team with seven freshmen, so they had a really hard job. The way that
they came together, collectively, to lead this team was really good to see."
That's what they have been doing for four years. Edwards, Lucas and East will
leave Penn State as one of the top three winningest classes in Penn State history.
They currently have 99 wins, one win shy of tying for second place all time.
Taylor has been at Penn State for 73 of the 99 wins after transferring from
So with all of the championships, accolades and wins it was a perfect way to complete
their Penn State careers at home as they will leave perhaps one of the most
influential classes in Lady Lion history.
"I'm really proud of everyone, but I'm so happy for the four of
us," Edwards said. "We came in together and we're leaving together with another
championship. We just have a bond over this championship and the ones
previously. It's great to win another one."
Penn State will now head to Indianapolis as the top seed in this weekend's Big
Ten Tournament. The Lady Lions are in search of their first tournament championship
over this success filled three year span.
By Gabrielle Richards, GoPSUsports.com Student Staff Writer
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - As the Penn State women's gymnastics team funneled
into the locker room before Friday's meet, they knew that they had to win. The
win wouldn't just signify a near-perfect home record, but it would be the icing
on top of the cake for the seniors. Emotions were running high as the Nittany
Lions made their way onto the mat; each teammate presented a little, handmade
gift to the seniors.
The team delivered
a solid, heartwarming performance in their win at Friday's quad meet. The
Nittany Lions won their last home meet of the season with a score of 196.600,
beating Western Michigan, Bridgeport, and Yale.
Across the board,
the Nittany Lions delivered a solid performance; a great close to the home
season for seniors Lindsay Musgrove and Kassidy Stauder.
Penn State started
the quad meet on vault with a lineup much shorter than they are used to. After
suffering injuries at last week's meet, junior all-arounder Randi Lau did not
compete. With her absence, the Nittany Lions competed with five vaulters,
instead of the usual six. Musgrove and Stauder scored 9.850, with Emma Sibson,
Krystal Welsh, and Sidney Sanabria-Robles each scoring a 9.875, posting a total
event score of 49.325.
Head coach Jeff
Thompson was most impressed with his team's vault performance, the event that
housed the their highest score of the evening.
"With it being
senior night, I was a little worried that we weren't going to have a great
night," Thompson said. "We only had five girls compete on vault and they each
knew they had to hit. We got off to a great start."
The team followed
suit on bars with Stauder posting a 9.925 and junior Alex Witt posting a career
high 9.850 in her first meet after recovering from an injury. The team finished
their rotation on the uneven bars with a score of 49.225.
"What a great way
for Alex [Witt] to come back," Thompson said. "She put up the second highest
score on bars."
The Nittany Lions
put up a score of 49.075 on balance beam and 48.975 on floor, sweeping the top
three spots in the all-around.
"What a great way
to win on senior night," Thompson said. "The kids fell back on their training
and they did what they had to do to win."
Saying Goodbye to Musgrove and Stauder
and Coach Thompson each started their Penn State careers at the same time four
years ago. In a touching video tribute to the seniors prior to the awards
ceremony and in the post-match press conference, it was clear how much these
seniors mean to their coaching staff. It was hard to miss the tears welling up
in Coach Thompson's eyes as he reminisced on his seniors.
"It is always hard to say goodbye to seniors, but this class is different,"
Thompson said. "They are the first group who started and finished with us.
Those girls signed up for one thing and were stuck with us. We give them a lot
of credit and a lot of thanks because it would have been easy for them to
change their mind and go somewhere else."
Musgrove made her
transition to Penn State in 2010; she quickly adjusted to the rigorous schedule
of Big Ten gymnastics and relished at the opportunity to succeed academically.
The Texas native has not only been a major contributor on vault, balance beam and
floor for the Nittany Lions, but she has been recognized for equally impressive
performance in the classroom. Musgrove was awarded Academic All-Big Ten honors
and Big Ten Distinguished Scholar Awards every season except her freshman year,
making the dean's list all but one semester.
"Being able to
represent such an amazing school and being apart of a team is a whole other
family away from home," Musgrove said. "It has been an amazing four years."
competed in the NCAA Regional Championships each year of her collegiate
gymnastics career. She reflected on her first time competing in Rec Hall and
how that experience has fueled her passion for the past four years.
"When you compete
in club gymnastics there is only one set of bleachers and you perform in front
of your family," Musgrove said. "Competing in Rec Hall is just so different
than that. There are fans in the stands, your classmates, and even little girls
who look up to you. Being able to do what I have been training for since I was
2 is just amazing."
graduate this semester with a degree in bio behavioral health, with the
intention of going to medical school. She hopes to use her degree to continue
her passion for sports; trading in her leotard for a lab coat and become a
sports medicine doctor.
"We have grown so
much over the past four years," Stauder said. "I am happy I go through this
experience with Lindsay [Musgrove]."
Stauder has made a
lasting impact competitively on the Penn State women's gymnastics team. She
encompasses the definition of consistency, striving to finish on the top of the
leaderboard in every event that she competes in.
"We have been
afforded such a great opportunity to be here," Stauder said. "From our
professors, teammates, coaches, nutritionists, and everyone who has helped make
this time the best for us, we have been given the opportunity to go so far."
As a Pennsylvania
girl born and bread, coming to Penn State has always been a dream of Stauder's.
In the course of her four years as a Nittany Lion she has constantly set the
bar higher for herself, beating her career bests on a regular basis. This
Friday's meet was no different: she set a new career high all-around score with
"I wasn't really
thinking about the all-around score going into the meet," Stauder said. "It's a
great feeling on senior night to go out with great scores and to improve week
Stauder is hoping
to beat her scores of last year's Big Ten performance where she finished third
in the all-around, took second on the balance beam, and tied for fifth on bars
and floor. She hopes that when she turns her tassel in May that she can improve
last year's scores as she has been doing all season. Stauder will graduate with
a degree in elementary education and with a personality perfectly suited for
"I think what I
will miss the most about those two is that they are unpredictable," Thompson
said. "Every day in the gym it is always something different. This is one of
the closest teams that I have ever had the pleasure of coaching. They genuinely
love each other."
Coach Thompson is
notorious for sharing a "word of the week" with his team. When asked if he had
one word to describe his seniors he didn't hesitate when he chose the word
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - This weekend didn't go as planned
for the men's team. The women's team did a great job of putting together a
great meet when things weren't looking to well for them and ended up becoming
Track and field is a very humbling sport. One day you are on top of the world
after a great meet. Then the next day you compete and things don't go as
planned. This weekend, we finished third, and I believe we earned that third
place spot. Wisconsin brought the necessary energy and focus to win. We are
still a team to be reckoned with, and at outdoor Big Tens, we will show that.
Watching the girls celebrate really motivated me, and hopefully it motivates my
teammates to go out and perform like we know how come outdoors. We definitely
have the necessary pieces in place to become a championship team. We have kids
who are willing to sacrifice their only personal glory for the betterment of
the team. Kids like Nick Scarpello who paced the mile heat. And for Wade
(Endress) and Robby (Creese), who really show what true sacrifice is about.
We also have kids who are resilient even when faced with adversity. My brother
Brandon didn't make the 400m final but came back later in the day and ran an
impressive 400m leg on the DMR and became a Big Ten champ in that event as a
result. This weekend was a true eye-opener to what we have to do to become Big
Ten champs. As long as we take things one moment and one day at a time, we will
be champions this outdoor season. The indoor season isn't over yet because we
still have NCAA Indoor National Championships in two weeks. We definitely have
a chip on our shoulders to prove to the entire country not just the Big Ten
that we are a team that everyone needs to look out for.
By Matt Allibone, GoPSUsports.com Student Staff Writer
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - Heading into its matchup against Wisconsin
yesterday, the Penn State men's basketball team knew that the key to upsetting
the 14th-ranked team in the country was finding a way to match the efficiency
of the Badgers.
With Wisconsin entering the game on a seven-game winning streak and
featuring four players averaging double-figures on the season, equaling the
Badgers output and shooting prowess would not be easy.
Although the Nittany Lions would nearly pull the feat off, even out-shooting
the Badgers 48 percent to 44 percent, Wisconsin's deadliness from beyond the
arc proved to be too much for Penn State to overcome. The Badgers hit eight 3-pointers compared to
just one for the Nittany Lions in what ended as a 71-66 setback for the Blue
"We needed to hold them under seven 3-pointers and that was the difference
in the game," Penn State head coach Patrick Chambers said. "They go in the
paint and act like they're going for a layup and then they kick it out for a
three. Those were daggers."
Down 31-27 at halftime, Chambers' team made numerous plays down the
stretch, shooting 50 percent after the break and going on a 12-5 run from the
15:32 mark to the 11:23 mark, yet saw the Badgers answer each big shot with one
of their own.
Not only did the Badgers match their season shooting average in the second
half by hitting 46 percent of their shots en route to 40 second half points,
they also went 14-15 from the free throw line after the break.
"They're a good team the way they pass the ball and execute their offense,"
redshirt junior shooting guard D.J. Newbill said. "Their system is flawless."
The Badgers also made the Nittany Lions pay for their miscues, generating
17 points off of 11 Penn State turnovers and forcing star point guard Tim
Frazier to spend 18 minutes on the bench after picking up three early fouls.
"We take pride in trying to have less than 10 (turnovers), but they scored
pretty much every time we turned the ball over," Chambers said. "We have to
take care of the ball a little bit better."
That being said, the Nittany Lions certainly did their part to give the fans
that filled the Bryce Jordan Center a thrilling game.
Led by Newbill, who once again paced the team with 23 points, the Lions
began to come alive at the 15:32 mark. When
down 43-33, sophomore forward Ross Travis came up with a steal and relayed the
ball to Newbill for a layup.
Newbill and junior guard John Johnson continued to turn the momentum over
the next 4:09, hitting two baskets apiece before sophomore forward Donovon Jack
tipped in a Newbill miss to narrow the Badgers lead to 48-45 with 11:23
"I thought when Tim went out our secondary players played really hard,"
Chambers said. "They were flying all over the floor and got (Wisconsin) to take
shots they weren't ready to take. Now they just have to do it a little longer."
With the momentum on Penn State's side, Wisconsin guard Ben Brust began to
heat up, scoring the Badgers next eight points, including two 3-pointers before
Nigel Hayes drained a pair of free throws to put Wisconsin up 58-51 at the 7:45
Though the Nittany Lions would continue to claw back, even cutting
Wisconsin's lead to 66-64 with 18 seconds left after a second chance layup by
Frazier, the Badgers went 11-12 from the free throw line in the final 6:16 to
hand the Nittany Lions their fifth conference loss by five or fewer points.
"That's the No. 14 team in the country," Chambers said. "We're one stop
away or one less turnover away from sitting here having beaten two top-25 teams
in one week."
With two remaining games left in the regular season before the Big Ten
tournament, the 14-15 Nittany Lions know there is every opportunity for them to
finish the season with the program's first winning record since 2010-'11.
The question that remains is how badly the Lions want to keep improving,
and if you ask Chambers, that question has an obvious answer.
"If you hate losing then it's really easy to come back on Monday and try to
get better," Chambers said. "I think a lot of guys in that locker room hate
losing so we're going to come back and get better and finish the season as
strong as we can and be the best team we can be."
By Mike Esse, GoPSUsports.com Student Staff
PARK, Pa. - When senior guard Ariel Edwards was asked what single word would
describe her Penn State career her answer was automatic. She chose the word growth.
That makes sense if you take a look at her career numbers. She went from being
a role player her freshman year to a main contributor and team captain her
senior year where she averages 14.9 points and 31.9 minutes per game.
However, that isn't the growth Edwards was talking about. She was referring to
the growth of the Lady Lion basketball program, which has always come before
"From when our senior class first got here the program isn't where it was now,"
Edwards said. "Seeing how far it has come in four years since I've been here is
amazing. It's definitely rewarding to see how much we have grown."
So when coaches and teammates choose words to describe Edwards, the most
commonly used word? Selfless.
While it is obvious just by talking to her, Edwards isn't here for personal
accomplishments or accolades. If she was, she probably would have complained
after not becoming a full time starter until her senior season. Edwards never
It's been about her teammates and coaches and what she can do to help the team
win basketball games. That's what assistant coach Kia Damon likes most about
Edwards personal growth. Not the numbers or statistics, but how she has been a
team first player and now a team leader in her senior campaign.
"She is able to be vocal to the younger players and help them understand the
level they need to perform at for the team," Damon said. "She's also really
good with the senior group by sharing her opinions and being vocal on the
things she sees and recognizes that the group needs to do."
Edwards says it's so easy to be that type of player because of the trust she
had in her coaching staff and teammates since her first day on campus. She
blossomed into what Damon calls the "x-factor" of this Penn State team that claimed
at least a share of its third straight Big Ten regular season title on Saturday
with a 77-62 win over Michigan.
On the floor, Edwards has evolved into a versatile threat on both ends of the
floor, which is why that label Damon gave her senior captain is very fitting.
Edwards ranks in the top two on the team in points and rebounds and third in
minutes, while anchoring the very strong Lady Lion defense.
"She is able to do so much for us from an offensive and defensive standpoint,"
Damon said. "She can play guard or forward, she can rebound or point our press break
and do a lot of things defensively. We use her versatility offensively because
we are able to post her up, put her in one-on-one situations, run her off
screens and she allows us to manipulate our offense in a lot of different
For the senior, she aims the credit toward her teammates in terms of why she
has developed on the court.
"It's always great to be surrounded by great players," Edwards said. "I feel
like on the court I've got so many other talented people out there with me and
that's a great feeling to feel like your teammates have your back."
Her teammates have her back because she has always had theirs right from the
"I'm very lucky to have her as a teammate," fellow senior Maggie Lucas said.
It's that simple for Ariel Edwards. Her selflessness has not gone unnoticed in
her four years at Penn State and it's all coming full circle as her team heads
into the postseason with a share of their third straight Big Ten regular season