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Nov. 14, 2012
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - The Lady Lions got all they could handle on Sunday against Howard in their season opener on Sunday, but an even tougher test will come on Wednesday evening at No. 16/13 Texas A&M. Penn State will travel to College Station, Texas for an early-season top-25 clash.
The Lady Lions (1-0) claimed a 72-61 victory over Howard to open the season last Sunday (Nov. 11) in the BJC. The Aggies (0-1) hit the road for their first game of the season, falling, 47-45, at Louisville in a tightly contested game.
Take look at the Lady Lions match up versus Texas A&M with some tidbits on both teams, courtesy of GoPSUsports.com, and watch senior Nikki Greene's video about playing near her hometown of Diboll, Texas.
Heading to Aggie Land
Penn State will make the trip to Reed Arena for the first time in program history and look to make an early statement against a good team. The Aggies will make the return trip to Happy Valley in 2013-14 and the home-and-home series gives each team's schedule a major upgrade.
Texas A&M is known for its passionate fan base and that will be something that the Blue and White will need to overcome, along with the Aggies 148-62 record inside Reed Arena since it opened in 1998. Last season, A&M boasted a 14-2 mark at home - going a perfect 7-0 in the non-conference slate - and hasn't lost a home non-conference game since Dec. 30, 2003 when they dropped a 46-40 decision to Houston. It has been 58 straight home non-conference wins for the Aggies.
Fast Paced vs. Slow Down
It's going to be a contrast in styles when the Lady Lions and Aggies meet on the court Wednesday. Penn State likes to push the ball, get out and run in transition and force the other team to play at their pace, while Texas A&M would like to slow things down and run out of the half court set.
Case in point, the Lady Lions racked up 72 points in their seasons opener against Howard, while the Aggies put up just 45 points in their first game at Louisville.
One main reason for the scoring discrepancy is that A&M likes to run their offense through their post players, centers Karla Gilbert and Kelsey Bone and forward Kristi Bellock. Bone tallied a team-high 14 points in the season opener versus the Cardinals, while Bellock and Gilbert each netted seven. It is a guard oriented offense for the Lions, with shooting guard Maggie Lucas pouring in a team-best 25 points and point guard Alex Bentley adding 14 points in the season opening win over the Bison.
It's the age-old question, the tortoise vs. hare, the transition game or the set offense.
First Game Jitters
Head coach Coquese Washington dismissed the woes that both her squad and Texas A&M had in their opening games.
"First games don't mean much," Washington quipped. "I think our girls will be ready to play and I know they will be ready to play. Gary (Blair) is a hall of fame coach and he'll have them focused. We had a good practice on Sunday and we'll be ready to play, as well."
Follow GoPSUsports.com's Greg Campbell on Twitter @SID_Greg