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Feb. 7, 2014
UNIVERSITY PARK, PA. - After a tough loss Thursday night, the #10/9 Penn State Lady Lions (17-5, 8-2 Big Ten) hit the road for the third time in four games when they visit Ohio State (14-12, 4-6) on Sunday at 2 p.m. The game will be televised live on ESPN2 with Bob Picozzi and LaChina Robinson on the call.
TV: The game will air on ESPN2 with Bob Picozzi and LaChina Robinson on the call. The game is also available on espn3.com.
RADIO: The game is on the Penn State Sports Network and WRSC 1390 locally with Jerry Fisher and Julia Trogele calling the action. The audio feed is available at www.GoPSUsports.com.
LAST TIME OUT: The Lady Lions dropped a 73-70 thriller to Iowa in the Bryce Jordan Center on Thursday night. The Lady Lions ran into a hot-shooting Hawkeye team, led by Ally Disterhoff, who turned in a career night with 24 points on 8-of-9 shooting from the field. The loss snaps Penn State's six-game winning streak. Senior guard Maggie Lucas led the team in scoring with 21 points to move into eighth place on the Big Ten's career scoring chart. Senior center Talia East turned in one of her best performances in her Lady Lion career, as she scored a career-best 14 points and matched her season-best performance on the glass with 12 rebounds for her fourth double-double of the season and second in her last three games. The two other Lady Lions to eclipse the double digit mark were senior guard/forward Ariel Edwards (16 pts., 5 rebs., 4 assts.) and senior guard Dara Taylor (10 pts., 3 steals).
SCOUTING OHIO STATE: The Buckeyes are 14-12 on the season and 4-6 in Big Ten play, but have dropped five of their last seven games. Ameryst Alston paces the Ohio State effort with a team-best 17.4 scoring average to go along with 3.2 rebounds, 3.0 assists and 1.2 steals per game. Alston is also stellar at the free throw line connecting on 84.3% of her shots (107-127). Raven Ferguson is also averaging double figures at a 10.9 per game clip. She also pulls in 5.3 rebounds per outing. Darryce Moore has been solid in the post for the Buckeyes, accounting for 9.0 points and a team-best 6.2 rebounds per game.
ALL-TIME VERSUS THE BUCKEYES: The Lady Lions are 35-21 all-time against Ohio State, including wins in the last four contests. PSU is 11-9 in games played in Columbus. Penn State snapped a six-game losing streak at Value City Arena with a 71-56 win on Jan. 27, 2013. The Lady Lions have not won back-to-back games in Columbus since 2002 and 2004.
LAST TIME VERSUS OSU: The Lady Lions put on a defensive clinic in their 66-42 win over Ohio State on Jan. 16. Penn State held the Buckeyes to just 29.6% shooting and forced 22 turnovers in the victory. Offensively the Lady Lions were led by senior guard Maggie Lucas, who scored 18 points to go along with five assists, five rebounds and three steals. Fellow senior guard/forward Ariel Edwards made a major impact on the game, finishing with her second double-double in the last three games and third of her Lady Lion career. Edwards accounted for 13 points and led the team on the glass with 10 rebounds. Talia East nearly posted her second career double-double with eight points and nine rebounds, while Dara Taylor paced the defensive effort with a game-high six steals.
WE MEET AGAIN: The Lady Lions will square off against its most frequent rival in the Big Ten when they visit the Buckeyes for the 57th meeting between the two. The squads have squared off 35 times in Big Ten regular-season play with Penn State holding a 21-14 advantage and 10 times in the Big Ten Tournament with each team winning five times. The teams also met 11 times before Penn State joined the conference with the Lions going 7-4 in those games.
FORMER COLLEAGUES MATCH-UP: Coquese Washington and Ohio State's Kevin McGuff will meet for the third time as head coaches. McGuff got the win in the first contest between the two with a 72-68 win on Nov. 15, 2007 while he was the head coach at Xavier. Washington evened the series at 1-1 with a 66-42 win over the Buckeyes on Jan. 16. The two were assistants together at Notre Dame for three seasons, including the 2001 National Championship campaign.
T'S A BEAST, AGAIN: Senior Talia East posted her fourth double-double of the season and second in the last three games with 14 points and 12 rebounds against Iowa. The 14 tallies are a career high for East, surpassing her previous mark of 13 points vs. Indiana (1/22/14). The 12 rebounds also equal East's season-high, which was also accomplished at Purdue (1/30/14).
BOUNCEBACK-ABILITY: Penn State has shown that it is resilient after a loss. The Lady Lions have won their last 19 games following a loss, dating back to the 2010-11 season. The Lady Lions last lost consecutive games on Feb. 17 and Feb. 24, 2011, which is the only time this season class has lost consecutive games in their career. PSU is 4-0 in games after a loss this season.
EDWARDS & TAYLOR INCREASE PRODUCTION: With the graduation of a strong senior class a year ago, Dara Taylor and Ariel Edwards have stepped in to fill the gaps as both have significantly increased their offensive production from a year ago. Taylor is averaging 11.7 points, 4.7 assists and 3.0 steals per game this season, which is up from 7.4 points, 3.4 assists and 2.4 steals a year ago. She has also increased her free throw percentage from .619 to .743 as a senior. Edwards has also turned in a impressive jump in production, improving her scoring average by nearly seven points (7.8 to 14.7) and rebounding average by two boards a game (3.6 to 5.6).
CAREER SEASON IN THE "AIR": Senior guard/forward Ariel Edwards is having career season for the Lady Lions. Edwards surpassed her scoring total from last season (252) just 18 games into the season. The 323 points are the most for the Elmont, N.Y., native in a single season. Additionally, Edwards has already achieved a personal-best 60 assists and 27 steals. Edwards' previous career-high in assists was 32 as a sophomore and she is working on doubling her collegiate total (68 in her first three seasons). The senior's previous personal mark for steals in a season was 22, set during her sophomore campaign. She is also on pace to have personal-best seasons in rebounds (125 as a sophomore) and blocks (10 as a junior).
The Lady Lions visit Indiana on Thursday at 7 p.m., before returning home for the Eighth Annual Pink Zone game against Wisconsin on Sunday, Feb. 16 at 1 p.m. $4 of every single-game ticket sold will go directly to Pink Zone. There will be a silent auction on the concourse and postgame jersey auction of the Lions' game-worn jerseys.
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 2014 Pink Zone at Penn State will take place on Sunday, Feb. 16 as the Lady Lions take on Wisconsin in the Bryce Jordan Center at 1 p.m. Last year, the Lady Lions donated a record $260,000 to breast cancer causes. This year's fundraising efforts will benefit the Mount Nittany Medical Center, Penn State Hershey Cancer Institute, Pennsylvania Breast Cancer Coalition, the Kay Yow Cancer Fund, J.C. Blair Memorial Hospital and Lewistown Hospital. For more information on the Pink Zone at Penn State, visit the official Pink Zone website at www.pennsylvaniapinkzone.org.
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.