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Dec. 9, 2007
UNIVERSITY PARK, PA. - The Lady Lions (7-3) used a balanced scoring attack and tough defense to post a 56-47 victory over Georgetown (5-2) on Sunday at the Bryce Jordan Center. Four Lady Lions reached double figures and six players had four points or more, while the Hoyas only had four players to get into the scoring column. It is the first time since March 2, 2007 (Illinois) that Penn State has held an opponent to less than 50 points.
Kam Gissendanner (Clairton, Pa.) notched her third career double-double with 10 points and a career-best 17 rebounds, while Rashida Mark (Brooklyn, N.Y.) registered her second double-double of the season with 10 points and 10 boards. Gissendanner's 17 rebounds are the most by a Lady Lion since Amanda Brown grabbed 18 caroms against Illinois in the Big Ten Tournament last season (3/2/07) and is the sixth highest single-game rebounding output in school history.
Brianne O'Rourke (Pittsburgh, Pa.) finished with a team-best 12 points and Tyra Grant (Youngstown, Ohio) had a solid all-around performance with 11 points, six rebounds, three assists, a steal and a blocked shot.
Penn State jumped out to an early 6-2 lead with four points from Mark and two tallies from Gissendanner, but a three-point play by Kieraah Marlow sliced the Lady Lions advantage to 6-5 with 16 minutes left in the half. The Hoyas tied the game at 8-8 with just over 12 minutes remaining and took their first lead of the game (9-8) at the 11:16 mark on a free throw by Marlow. However, the Lady Lions reeled off a 5-0 run to establish a 13-9 lead thanks to baskets by Evelyn Lewis (Hampton, Va.) and Mashea Williams (Erie, Pa.), as well as a free throw from Grant.
After a pair of Brina Pollack free throws, Gissendanner knocked down a three-pointer to make it a 16-11 game with 9:32 on the clock, but Georgetown would score the next four points to close within one before Meggan Quinn (Red Lion, Pa.) connected on a three-pointer to pull ahead by four (19-15). Following the Quinn triple, the Hoyas went on a 5-0 run to gain a one-point advantage at 20-19 with just over five minutes to play in the period.
The two teams exchanged baskets until a spinning lay-up by Pollack gave Georgetown its largest lead to that point at 24-21 with 2:49 on the clock. The Lady Lions went on a 10-2 run to close out the half and enter the locker room with a 31-26 lead. The post players headlined the run as Mark and Meredith Monroe (Olney, Md.) accounted for four points each and Grant added a baseline jumper to help establish the five-point margin.
Gissendanner knocked down a deep jumper to open the second period and give Penn State its largest lead of the game to that point at seven tallies (33-26). The Hoyas scored back-to-back baskets to slice the Penn State lead back to three points, but the Lady Lions responded with two baskets by O'Rourke to pull ahead by seven with 13:44 remaining. The squads swapped baskets for the next several possessions until Williams' jumper on the wing started a 9-0 run to give Penn State a 12-point lead at 49-37 with 5:45 remaining.
The Hoyas rallied with back-to-back baskets and knocked down a pair of free throws to cut the Lady Lion to six points (49-43) with 1:49 remaining. However, Grant converted on a pair of free throws to make it a 51-43 game before Pollack converted on an uncontested lay-up to pull the Hoyas back within six points with just under a minute remaining. O'Rourke added three free throws and Grant made both of her shots from the charity stripe, sandwiched by a Pollack jumper, for the final nine-point margin (56-47).
The Lady Lions close out their two-game homestand against Mississippi on Thursday, Dec. 13 at 8 p.m. Penn State rounds out its non-conference schedule at Bucknell on Saturday, Dec. 15 at 7 p.m.
Fans can purchase single-game tickets by visiting the Bryce Jordan Center box office, calling 814-865-5555 or 800-863-3336 or by clicking on the ticket link on www.GoPSUsports.com. The second annual THINK PINK Day is slated for Sunday, Feb. 10 versus Iowa at noon. For more information on THINK PINK Day, visit Penn State's official THINK PINK website at www.gopsusports.com/thinkpink.
GAME NOTES: Kamela Gissendanner pulled down a career-high 17 boards, marking her fourth double-digit rebounding performance of the season and her third career double-double... Gissendanner's 17 rebounds are the most for a Penn State player since Amanda Brown pulled down 18 rebounds in the Big Ten Tournament game against Illinois last season (3/2/07)...Mashea Williams grabbed 3 rebounds, marking 200 on her career...Rashida Mark scored 10 points and pulled down 10 rebounds for her second career double-double...Georgetown is the first opponent to score less that 50 points since a 61-49 victory over Illinois on 3/2/07.