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Feb. 16, 2014
UNIVERSITY PARK, PA. - The #11/11 Penn State Lady Lions (20-5, 11-2 Big Ten) used a 9-0 run late in the second half to post a 78-68 win over Wisconsin (10-15, 3-10) in the Eighth Annual Pink Zone at Penn State game in front of 12,585 fans, including 698 breast cancer survivors. The crowd is the sixth-largest crowd for a women's game in the BJC.
The Lady Lions honored a Pink Zone-record 698 survivors at halftime that represented 3,499 years and six months of survivorship. The preliminary fundraising total for this year's Pink Zone is $196,364.50, which does not include donations from single-game ticket sales, t-shirt sales or the CharityBuzz.com online auction.
Senior guard Maggie Lucas (Narberth, Pa.) continued her stellar play with a game-high 25 points on 8-of-17 shooting to go along with five rebounds, five assists and a steal. She was 8-for-8 from the free throw line. Fellow senior Ariel Edwards (Elmont, N.Y.) posted her third double-double of the season with 16 points to go along with 10 rebounds, including seven on the offensive glass.
Dara Taylor (Wilmington, Del.) also reached double figures with 10 points, four assists and three steals. She has had a steal in 27 consecutive games, dating back to last season. Junior Tori Waldner (Milton, Ga.) also reached double-digits with 10 tallies to go along with four rebounds and two blocks, while senior Talia East (Philadelphia, Pa.), who keyed the Lions' late run, ended with eight points, six rebounds, two blocks and two steals in 21 minutes.
The Badgers sprinted out to an 11-2 lead in the first 3:17 of the game, but the Lady Lions responded with a Waldner jumper, followed by a bucket by Edwards. After a score by Wisconsin's Morgan Paige, Lucas scored on a jumper and a layup. Edwards capped the 10-2 run and close within one point (13-12) with 12:24 left.
After three points for the Badgers, the Lady Lions kicked off a 20-2 run to take a 30-18 lead with 6:33 left on the clock. Lucas scored the first seven points of the run and accounted for nine total points, while Taylor added five points during the spurt. Wisconsin responded by scoring six of the next eight points to make it a 32-24 game with less than four minutes to play. The squads exchanged scores for the rest of the half to send the Lions into the break with a 40-34 lead.
The Lady Lions came out strong to start the second frame as East and Waldner scored on Penn State's first two possessions to extend the lead to 10 (44-34) less than a minute into the second. However, the Badgers would bounce back to score the next five points to cut the gap in half (44-39).
After an old-fashioned three-point play by Edwards, the Badgers scored six of the next eight points to close within four (49-45) with 15:27 to play. Peyton Whitted (Suwanee, Ga.) converted on a layup but the Badgers went on a 6-2 spurt to make it a two-point game (53-51) with less than 12 minutes to go.
Edwards converted on her second three-point play of the game to stretch the lead to five. However, the Badgers came back strong with an 8-2 run to take a 59-58 lead with 4:31 on the clock.
East took a pass from Lucas and connected on the basket to jump-start the Lady Lions and give them a 60-59 lead with 4:22 left. After a pair of Lucas free throws, East grabbed a defensive rebound and threw the outlet pass to Taylor, who was fouled. Taylor made the first free throw and missed the second, but East snagged the rebound and converted on the layup to extend the lead. After a steal by East on the ensuing Badger possession, Edwards made her layup to complete the 9-0 run and give Penn State a 67-59 lead with 3:05 left.
The squads exchanged scores the rest of the way until Penn State sealed the 10-point win on two free throws by Lucas and one freebie by Mitchell.
GAME NOTES: Today's crowd of 12,585 is the sixth-largest crowd to enjoy a Lady Lions game in the Bryce Jordan Center ... The Pink Zone game had a record 698 survivors in attendance ... Penn State has won 20 games for the fourth-straight season ... The Lady Lions have won 10 home games for the fourth consecutive season ... Penn State is 7-2 in home Pink Zone games ... Senior Ariel Edwards posted her third double-double of the season and fourth of her career with 16 points and 10 rebounds ... Edwards also surpassed the 900-point mark for her career (908) ... With two blocks, Talia East moved into a tie for ninth place on Penn State's career blocks list with Bethany Collins (92) ... After adding another eight free throws to her season high, Maggie Lucas moves up to sixth on Penn State's season free throws made with 148, passing Kelly Mazzante (144; 2001-02), Lisa Shepherd (146; 2000-01) and Helen Darling (146; 1998-99) and Tanisha Wright (147; 2004-05) ... With a team-high and game-high 25 points, Lucas moves into 20 on Penn State's single-season scoring list 541 ... Lucas also recorded her 61st career game and 14th game this season with 20 or more points ... Lucas increases her total career points to 2,379, moving into 83rd place in the NCAA record book ... Dara Taylor has collected a steal in 27-straight games dating back to last year ... Penn State improves their all-time record to 29-11 against Wisconsin ... The Lady Lions are now 8-1 when four or more players reach double figures.
The Lady Lions continue their homestand against Northwestern on Thursday at 7 p.m. It's Jersey Night, fans that wear their favorite Penn State jersey will receive a $5 ticket. It's also our final mini-magnetic bobblehead giveaway, fans will get the Nittany Lion Mini-Bobblehead at the gates while supplies last.
Lady Lion Basketball single-game tickets are available by calling 1-800-NITTANY. Single-game tickets are $15 and $12 for adults and seniors and $9 and $7 for youth (12 and younger). The PNC Flex Books are available again this year for $99. The Flex Book gives fans 12 vouchers, 10 that can be redeemed in any combination for Nittany Lion and Lady Lion Basketball tickets throughout the year and two extra vouchers for the Nittany Lions' Coaches Vs. Cancer game and the Lady Lions' Pink Zone game.
For the 15th time, Penn State will host the NCAA Women's Basketball Tournament First and Second Rounds on March 23 and 25, 2014. All-session tickets are $30 for adults and $17 for youth and students. There is also an all-session group rate for groups of 20 or more of any age at $20 per package. Fans can purchase tickets by calling 1-800-NITTANY or visiting the Penn State athletics ticket office between the hours of 10 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
The Lady Lions are on Twitter. Follow sports information contact Kris Petersen (@ladylionsid) and the Lady Lions and coaches (@pennstatewbb) to get the inside scoop. The Lady Lions are also on Facebook at www.facebook.com/pennstateladylions.