Weekend Sports Recap: Women’s Soccer A Bright Spot Among Other Unfortunate Results
This past weekend was not a good one for Penn State sports. This may be the first time this semester where that has been the case, but as fall sports’ schedules begin to wind down and their schedules pick up, some teams got upset while others got simply blown out.
Friday only had two games, which saw a win and a loss for the Nittany Lions. The baseball team was in Cuba, and took on Mayabeque in a historic victory. Nick Riotto led the Nittany Lions with three RBIs as they won 9-3, the first-ever victory for any United States-based baseball team over a Cuban National Team.
Back in the States was the Lady Lions basketball team, which fell to Cal State Northridge. Freshman Teniya Page dropped 26 points for Penn State in an 81-73 loss.
The marquee event on Saturday was the football team’s matchup at Michigan State. Some costly turnovers and a depleted defense contributed to a 55-16 loss, which in turn contributed to the firing of Offensive Coordinator John Donovan. If that all wasn’t enough, Saturday night saw another loss from the perennial powerhouse women’s volleyball team. Russ Rose’s team, ranked No. 7 in the nation, was swept by No. 5 Nebraska. The NCAA Tournament bracket was released on Sunday, and Penn State has a seven seed in the Des Moines Regional.
Baseball and women’s basketball both played again on Saturday. The baseball team lost 15-2 to Matanzas and women’s hoops fell to 3-3 after an eight-point loss to BYU.
The only good news of the day came in the form of women’s soccer and men’s basketball. The latter tipped off with Bucknell at home, winning 62-58 after a late Payton Banks three-pointer that put heat on the Bison. Soon after, at Jeffrey Field, No. 1 Penn State women’s soccer continued its romp through the NCAA Tournament. The Nittany Lions shut out No. 2 West Virginia to advance to the Final Four against Rutgers. Penn State still hasn’t allowed a goal in the tournament.
The lone game on Sunday was the No. 20 men’s hockey team’s annual matchup with Vermont in the Philadelphia Flyers’ Wells Fargo Center. Usually, the Lions have entered this game unranked playing a ranked Vermont team, but the tables turned this year and the score reflected that. Penn State won 4-0 as Eamon McAdam posted his first collegiate shutout a week before Big Ten play begins.
Highlights from the upcoming week include men’s basketball in the B1G/ACC Challenge on Wednesday and women’s basketball in the same Challenge on Thursday. Friday’s highlights are women’s soccer in the Final Four (vs. Rutgers in North Carolina, 5 p.m. on ESPNU), men’s hockey opening Big Ten play at home vs. Michigan State, and women’s volleyball opening the NCAA Tournament against Howard. On Saturday are men’s basketball, men’s hockey, and (probably) women’s volleyball, all at home.