Julia Trogele Layup Propels Penn State to Victory
With nine seconds left in the game, a lay up from Julia Trogele gave the Penn State women’s basketball team a 67-65 road victory over Illinois on Thursday. The Lady Lions overcame a poor shooting performance and 24 turnovers to improve to 6-2 in the Big Ten.
Penn State headed into the match-up with Illinois having lost two of three Big Ten road games, including a 10-point loss to Purdue last week. Trogele, who had 19 points and 11 rebounds, and Nikki Greene, who had 16 points and 14 rebounds, made sure the Lady Lions would not get blown out again.
The Lady Lions and the Illini battled closely throughout the first half. Despite 14 turnovers, Penn State managed to take a 26-23 halftime lead. The Lady Lions dominated on the boards, grabbing 10 more than Illinois. Penn State’s strong defense kept Illinois to just 30 percent shooting in the first half, which was necessary due to poor shooting on Penn State’s part.
The teams went back and forth through the second half, as well. An early shot from Greene put Penn State up by five, but Illinois fought back and took a lead of their own. With 9:26 left in the game, the Illini went up 52-46, but the Lady Lions scored the next nine points and retook the lead.
With under a minute to play, Mia Nickson made a free throw to tie the game at 65. A turnover by Illinois gave Penn State the ball. After an offensive rebound, Alex Bentley passed it inside to Trogele for the game-winning lay up. Bentley finished with 14 points and three assists.
Penn State improves to 17-5 overall and 6-2 in the Big Ten with this win. The victory also pushes the Lady Lions into a four-way tie in the Big Ten standings. Penn State returns home on Sunday to take on Ohio State at 2 p.m. The Buckeyes are ranked 23rd, but have only won six of their last 13 games.