What a wild first weekend for Penn State sports. Out of the nine games played this weekend across the various sports, the Nittany Lions were victorious in each. Not a bad start to the school year, we’d say.
Here’s what went down this weekend:
The No. 1 women’s volleyball team picked up three wins this weekend thanks to a dominating performance in the Penn State Classic at Rec Hall. In the season opener against TCU, Penn State jumped out to an early 13-6 lead and never looked pack, picking up the win in three straight sets (25-10, 25-17, 25-17). Several freshmen had big games, as Ali Frantti contributed 13 kills and four blocks in the route while Simone Lee added six kills.
Penn State continued its dominance against Iona in the first game of the Penn State Classic, winning in straight sets once again (25-13, 25-14, 25-11). Frantti had 11 kills, two aces, and two blocks, while juniors Aiyana Whitney and Megan Courtney each picked up eight kills in the win.
William & Mary proved to be no match for Penn State in the Penn State Classic title game, as the Nittany Lions won in straight sets (25-13, 25-12, 25-9) to close out the weekend. Lee continued her impressive weekend with 10 kills, while senior Micha Hancock added five kills and five digs in the victory.
Penn State heads to the West Coast next Friday to play No. 3 Stanford in the Big Ten/Pac-12 Challenge.
The No. 15 men’s soccer team started its season with a 1-0 win against Oakland at Jeffrey Field on Friday night. The Nittany Lions dominated the majority of the game (Penn State had 10 SOG to Oakland’s 3 SOG), but Penn State had to wait until the 52nd minute to get on the board. Forward Connor Maloney beat the Oakland defense and buried it past Grizzlies’ goaltender Elliot Tarney for what was ultimately the game winning goal.
Maloney carried that momentum into Sunday’s game, as he notched two more goals in a 3-0 win against St. John’s. Like last game, the Nittany Lions had to wait until the second half to get on the board with Maloney’s 48th minute goal. However, the floodgates opened after that as Mikey Minutillo tacked on a goal in the 72nd minute and Maloney added some insurance with a 90th minute goal to squander any chance of a St John’s comeback.
The women’s soccer team was in action against Connecticut this weekend, picking up a 3-1 win to move to 3-0-0 on the season. Junior Mallory Weber got the Nittany Lions on the board quickly with a fifth minute goal to put Penn State up 1-0. Freshman Megan Schafer tacked on two more goals 28th and 44th minutes to increase the Nittany Lion’s lead to 3-0. The Huskies added a goal in the 84th minute, but it was too little too late.
Penn State returns to action this Friday against North Carolina in the Duke Nike Invitational.
The No. 8 field hockey team opened its season this past weekend with two big wins against No. 9 Old Dominion and No. 6 Virginia. Against Old Dominion, the Nittany Lions fell behind 1-0 with 11:33 remaining in the first half, but Penn State quickly answered with two goals from Jenna Chrismer. Goalie Kylie Licata was able to slam the door from there on out with a career-high nine saves to give Penn State the 2-1 win.
Licata continued her strong play Sunday against Virginia, posting six saves in a 3-0 shutout of the Cavaliers. Penn State got two goals from Natalie Buttinger and an insurance goal from Amanda Dinunzio to put the game out of reach.
Penn State heads to Connecticut next Saturday to face the Huskies at 12 p.m.
James Franklin’s first game as the Penn State coach was an exciting one, as the Nittany Lions needed a last second field goal from Sam Ficken to beat UCF 26-24. Christian Hackenberg went 32-47 with 454 yards and a touchdown, while redshirt freshman DaeSean Hamilton reeled in 11 catches for 165 yards.
Penn State faces Akron at home next Saturday at 12 p.m.