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Head Coach Coquese Washington
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Coaching StaffCoquese Washington: Coquese Washington was introduced as the fifth head coach of the Penn State women's basketball program on April 23, 2007. Washington is the first female African-American head coach in Penn State history.
Washington led the 2013-14 Lady Lion squad to a feat that no other Penn State team has accomplished, winning three consecutive conference regular-season titles with a 13-3 record in Big Ten action. Led by the play of a strong senior class, the Lady Lions advanced to the NCAA Sweet Sixteen for the second time in three years. The graduating class of Maggie Lucas, Ariel Edwards, Dara Taylor and Talia East produced 101 wins, which is the second-highest total by a Lady Lion class. The Lady Lions finished the season 13th in the Associated Press poll and 14th in the USA Today Sports Coaches' Poll.
Along the way to collecting her second Big Ten Player of the Year award, Lucas finished second in school history and fourth in Big Ten history in scoring (2,510) and broke the Penn State and Big Ten records for career three-pointers made (365) and career free throw percentage (.907). She was selected in the second round of the 2014 WNBA Draft by the Phoenix Mercury. Edwards became the 36th member of the 1,000-point club en route to collecting All-Big Ten first team accolades. She finished seventh in the Big Ten in scoring (15.7) and was 11th in free throw percentage (.814). Edwards signed a free agent contract with the WNBA's Tulsa Shock. Taylor also had a stellar senior campaign and collected the Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year award after leading the conference in steals. East also earned postseason honors as she was named All-Big Ten honorable mention. In addition, Washington was honored with her third consecutive Big Ten Coach of the Year honor.
The Lady Lions continued their run in the national spotlight in 2012-13 as they collected their second-straight Big Ten regular-season title and seventh overall with a 26-6 overall record and 14-2 mark in conference play. In each of Washington's first six years, Penn State improved its Big Ten win total. The Lady Lions posted their third consecutive 25-win season, joining the 1993-94, 1994-95 and 1995-96 squads as the only teams in program history to accomplish the feat. Penn State also advanced to the second round of the NCAA Tournament with a win over Cal Poly. The Lady Lions were consistently ranked in the Top 10 for most of the season and finished eighth in the Associated Press Top 25 and 12th in the USA Today Sports Coaches' Poll.
With another stellar campaign, the accolades continued to roll in for the Lady Lions. Washington was selected as the Big Ten Coach of the Year by the media for the second-straight season and became just the fifth mentor in Big Ten history to win back-to-back Coach of the Year accolades. She was also the WBCA Region 6 Coach of the Year and a finalist for WBCA National Coach of the Year for the second-straight season.
Kia Damon: Damon, who is in her eighth season with the Penn State blue and white, serves as the Lady Lions' offensive coordinator and under her influence, the Lady Lions have led the Big Ten in scoring two of the last three seasons and in 2011, Penn State led the nation in three-point shooting. In addition, Damon coaches the wings and plays a vital role in opponent scouting. Damon will also play a major role in recruiting for the Lady Lions, having served as the recruiting coordinator for the last four years.
Damon molded wing Ariel Edwards into an All-Big Ten first team selection her senior season. Edwards finished seventh in the Big Ten in scoring (15.7) and 11th in free throw percentage (.814). She also became the 36th member of Penn State's 1,000-point club and ended her career 34th on the list (1,054) and 14th in career free throw percentage (.784).
Itoro Coleman: Coleman returns for a second stint with the Lady Lions after spending three years away as the head coach at her alma mater, Clemson. She previously served as an assistant coach at Penn State from 2008-10.
Coleman will play a major role in the organization and coordination of Lady Lion recruiting. She will also serve as the position coach for the posts, while serving as coordinator for special situations.
Jocelyn Wyatt:Wyatt is in her first season with the Lady Lions. She comes to Penn State after a four-year stint at Georgia State.
Wyatt will serve as the team's defensive coordinator and will coach the guards. Additionally, she will assist in all aspects of the Lady Lion recruiting efforts. Wyatt spent the last four seasons on the Georgia State staff as an assistant coach. During her tenure with the Panthers, Wyatt coached Kendra Long, who was an All-Sun Belt third team selection and broke the Georgia State three-pointers record for a season and a career. She was also instrumental in recruiting the top-ranked junior college player in 2012.