The No. 11 Penn State Lady Lions used a late run to secure a 78-68 victory over Wisconsin in the team’s annual Pink Zone game.
A crowd of 12,585 fans — the sixth-largest crowd for a women’s game in BJC history — came out to support the team and help raise money for one of six benefactor organizations: Mount Nittany Health, Penn State Hershey, the Pennsylvania Breast Cancer Location, J.C. Blair Memorial Hospital, Geisinger-Lewistown and the Kay Yow Cancer Fund.
Seniors led the scoring for the Lady Lions last night with Maggie Lucas registering a game-high 25 points along with five rebounds, five assists, and a steal. Ariel Edwards had her third double-double of the season with 16 points and 10 rebounds, while Dara Taylor had 10 points, four assists, and three steals.
The Badgers started the game with an early 11-2 run in the game’s first three minutes, but the Lady Lions responded with a 10-2 run of their own to cut the Badger lead to 13-12.
After three quick points for the Badgers, the Lady Lions ripped off a 20-2 run to take a formidable 30-18 lead with six minutes remaining in the half. The run was led by the Penn State backcourt, as Lucas and Taylor combined to score 14 points.
Wisconsin quickly cut the lead to six, the teams exchanged buckets for the rest of the half, and Penn State went into the break with a 40-34 lead.
The Lady Lions started the second half strong, as Talia East and Tori Waldner scored on Penn State’s first two possessions to give the Lady Lions a 10 point lead. However, Wisconsin went on a 17-9 run to make it a 53-51 Lady Lion lead with less than 12 minutes to go.
Edwards responded by scoring, getting fouled, and making her free throw, but the Badgers would not go down without a fight. Wisconsin came back with an 8-2 run to take a 59-58 lead with a little more than four minutes to play.
The Lady Lions fought on and put up nine unanswered points to give Penn State a 67-59 lead with 3:05 left. The two sides continued to exchange blows for the remainder of the game, but the Lady Lions kept Wisconsin at bay and walked out of the BJC with a 78-68 victory.
Penn State is now 20-5 on the season and winners of 14 of its last 16 contests. The team will return to the court on Thursday at home against Northwestern. The game will tip off at 7 p.m.