Following its first Big Ten road win last Sunday against Northwestern, Penn State (16-8, 6-6 Big Ten) defeated Minnesota (12-12, 3-8 Big Ten) 77-66 Wednesday night at the Bryce Jordan Center. Teniya Page led the way with 25 points, while Lindsey Spann had an impressive performance with 13 points off the bench to help push the Lady Lions back into NCAA Tournament consideration.
How it Happened
The Lady Lions fell into an early 8-0 hole just two and a half minutes into the game. The deficit was due to poor ball handling, impatience in the offensive end, and sloppy defense. Penn State’s Teniya Page, Amari Carter, and Sierra Moore added a series of baskets, however Minnesota countered with a pair of three pointers; extending its lead to 14-6.
With a 1:52 remaining in the first quarter, the Lady Lions tied the game at 16 following a 10-0 run that was sparked by back-to-back three pointers by Lindsay Spann and and Jaida Travascio-Green. At the end of the first quarter, Minnesota led 18-16 with Gopher forward Taiye Bello leading all scores with six points.
Penn State got off to a fast start in the second quarter as Page and Peyton Whitted combined for nine points in three minutes. The Lady Lions took a brief one-point lead, however gave up two easy layups due to an inability to rebound. With 4:37 remain before the half, Minnesota led 30-29. Minnesota was able to punish Penn State’s inability to guard the three point line and extend its lead to 39-33. The Gophers shot an impressive 4-9 (44.4%) from beyond the arch in the first half.
However, Spann answered right back with a pair of threes, one of which came right before the halftime buzzer. At the half the score was all tied up at 39. Minnesota’s Bello led all scorers at the half with 12, while Spann and Page tallied 11 and 9 points respectively.
Penn State’s Travascio-Green splashed an early three to give the Lions a lead 42-41 lead. Page and Carter continued the offense with several buckets, however the Lady Lions fell victim to multiple transition layups on the defensive end. With five minutes left in the third, Penn State held a slight 47-45 advantage.
Following multiple possessions of stellar defense, Penn State was able to extend its lead 51-45 thanks to layups from Spann and Kaliyah Mitchell. After Page hit a pair of free throws, Minnesota’s Kenisha Bell connected on a three to stop the bleeding. Penn State added three more free throws to end the third quarter leading 56-51.
The Lady Lions started off the fourth quarter similarly to the third as they capitalized on easy baskets from Page, Moore, and Ashanti Thomas. The flood gates opened mid way through the quarter as Page tallied five quick points, while Moore added two baskets of her own. Minnesota struggled to keep pace with the Lions as Page scored at will. This was enough for the Lady Lions to close out Minnesota 77-66.
Player Of The Game
Teniya Page | Guard | Sophomore
Teniya Page exploded with an offensive onslaught in the fourth quarter to finish with a game-high 25 points. Simply sensational.
The Lady Lions will take on Purdue on February 11 at the Bryce Jordan Center.