Free Throws Lift Penn State Women’s Hoops Over No. 25/21 Rutgers

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 Trailing by one with one second on the clock, junior Teniya Page (Chicago, Ill.) was fouled and Rutgers head coach C. Vivian Stringer got a technical foul, awarding Penn State five free throws. Page knocked down four clutch free throws on five attempts to propel the Penn State women’s basketball program to a 70-67 victory over the No. 25/21 Scarlet Knights at the Bryce Jordan Center on Thursday (Jan. 18).

The Lady Lions (12-8, 3-4 B1G) earned their first victory over the Scarlet Knights (17-4, 5-2 B1G) as Big Ten opponents and snapped a six-game skid against Rutgers.

Page was the leading scorer for the Blue and White with 34 points, marking the 70th time in program history a Penn State player has recorded a 30-point game. Furthermore, it marked the sixth time that Page had scored 30-plus points in her three year career, equaling Kahadeejah Herbert’s total to tie for No. 3 all-time at Penn State. Furthermore, Page’s 34-point effort is tied for No. 9 by Penn State player in the Bryce Jordan Center, sitting tied with Kam Gissendanner’s 34-point effort vs. Texas Tech in 2005.

Sophomore Jaida Travascio-Green (Lisle, Ill.) went 3-for-5 from 3-point range, pushing her into double-figures for the 14th time this season with 15 points on the night.

Penn State collected its sixth double-digit steal game of the season and second in Big Ten play as Amari Carter (Washington, D.C.) snagged five of the Lady Lion’s 10 steals on the night. Carter also had a team-high two blocks and scored 10 points in the win.

De’Janae Boykin (Springdale, Md.) grabbed a team-best 10 rebounds, five offensive and five defensive boards, and Alisia Smith (Lansing, Mich.) added a personal Big Ten-best nine boards.

Leading the Scarlet Knights was Khadaizha Sanders with 14 points on 80 percent shooting from the field. Stasha Carey and Tyler Scaife both followed with ten points apiece, while Nigia Greene went 3-for-3 from beyond the arc for nine points. Carey also pulled down 11 rebounds for the Scarlet Knights to record the double-double.

Turning Point

With 0:38 left in the fourth quarter

After Rutgers pulled ahead by one point with a jumper from Scaife, Penn State got the ball back with 38 seconds left on the clock. Page missed a shot, but Travascio-Green grabbed the offensive rebound. After stalling for 29 seconds, Page forced the 3-point shot, drawing a foul with one second left on the clock, as well as earning two additional free throws for a Rutgers technical foul. Page sunk four of her five free throw attempts to win the game for the Lady Lions.

Difference Makers

Penn State

·         G Teniya Page – Scored a game-high 34 points on 12-of-19 shooting, including two 3-pointers. Sunk 8-of-9 free throws.
·         G Jaida Travascio-Green – Scored 15 points with three offensive rebounds and one assist.
·         G Amari Carter – Scored 10 points with three rebounds. Added five steals and two blocks.
·         F De’Janae Boykin – Scored six points with a team-best 10 rebounds.
·         Board Battle – Penn State owned the edge on the glass, 34-30, including 16 offensive rebounds, which led to a 23-9 edge in second-chance points.
·         Stealing The Show – The Lady Lions posted their sixth double-digit steal game of the season and second in Big Ten play.
 
Rutgers

G Khadaizha Sanders – Scored team-high 14 points, shooting 4-of-5 with five assists.
G Tyler Scaife – Scored 10 points and added two assists and two rebounds.
G Stasha Carey – Scored 10 points and grabbed 11 rebounds.
G Nigia Greene – Scored nine points on three 3-pointers.
 

First Quarter
After Rutgers secured the tip and opened the scoring, it took the Lady Lions nearly two minutes to score their first point, as Page knotted the score at 4-4 on back-to-back jumpers from the left elbow. Carter followed up with a steal and fast break bucket to allow Penn State to take a 6-4 lead. However, Rutgers quickly answered to take back the lead, before Siyeh Frazier (Detroit, Mich.) knotted the score for the second time with a jumper from the wing. With 16 seconds left in the opening frame, Boykin grabbed an offensive rebound, which she would lay in to give Penn State the slight advantage heading into the second quarter of play.

Second Quarter
Penn State started the second quarter with a turnover, allowing Rutgers to tie the score, however, the Lady Lions were quick to answer when Page sunk a 3-pointer and got fouled, making the free throw. The two teams continued to answer one another making the difference in score only a point throughout most of the second quarter. A Penn State foul allowed Rutgers to tie the score, 26-26, with 3:31 left in the half. Travascio-Green ended the first half by hitting back-to-back shots and sinking two free throws to help expand the Lady Lion’s lead to eight points heading into halftime.

Third Quarter
Page opened the second half with a jumper just18 seconds into the half to push the Lady Lions out to a 10-point lead, their first double-digit lead of the game. Both teams suffered through scoring droughts until a steal by Boykin and a quick jumper by Page forced the Scarlet Knights to take their first timeout of the second half. Rutgers continued to pull closer, but Penn State had an answer each trip down the floor as Travascio-Greene ended the third quarter with another three to make the score 52-43 heading into the final 10 minutes of play.

Fourth Quarter
Rutgers started the fourth with a quick jumper, but Penn State would respond with a 3-pointer from Page on the opposite end, bringing the score to 55-45. The first half of the fourth quarter followed the same manner with constant back-and-forth play, but with about five minutes left the Scarlet Knights began chipping away at the PSU lead. The Scarlet Knights went on a 7-0 spurt, closing the Penn State lead to 61-57 with 3:03 to play. A Penn State foul brought Rutgers within two points before a Lady Lion turnover allowed Rutgers sink a layup and draw a foul to take the lead, 65-64, with 1:22 to play. Penn State answer back with a Carter bucket, but Rutgers responded with a Scaife hoop to make it 67-66 with 39 seconds left.

Page attempted a shot with 30 seconds on the clock that caromed off, but was rebounded by Travascio-Green to keep the ball in Penn State’s hands. Page stalled near the top of the key before taking a 3-pointer with just seconds left. The junior guard was fouled on the shot, while Rutgers also picked up a technical foul, sending Page to the line for five free throws with just 1.0 showing on the game clock. Trailing by one, Page would make her first shot to knot the score at 67 before missing her second attempt. After collecting herself, Page made the remaining three shots to give Penn State a 70-67 lead with one second remaining.  Rutgers advanced the ball to the front court and got off a shot that would raddle off the rim, sending Penn State to the victory.

Penn State 70, Rutgers 67

Up Next
Penn State remains at the Bryce Jordan Center to face Illinois on Tuesday, Jan. 23 at 7 p.m. The game will be carried on BTN2go.com, as well as over the airwaves of the Penn State Radio Network.

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