Lady Lions far too much inside for Iowa

Post presence is the difference in Penn State's 87-71 win

Jeff Linder
Published: January 5 2014 | 4:36 pm - Updated: 29 March 2014 | 1:40 am in

IOWA CITY -- Lisa Bluder's first postgame comment stated all that was necessary.

"(Penn State) is big, strong and fast," Bluder said. "They were better than us in all those areas today."

The 17th-ranked Lady Lions dominated the glass and the paint, creating a 16-1 advantage in second-chance points, and handled No. 23 Iowa, 87-71, in a Big Ten women's basketball game before 6,230 fans Sunday afternoon at Carver-Hawkeye Arena.

Penn State has an wealth of riches inside -- 6-foot-5, 6-3 and 6-3 across the starting front line, plus 6-3 off the bench. That alone was a mismatch for Iowa.

Sprinkle in guard Maggie Lucas, perhaps the Big Ten's best player, and it was far too much for the Hawkeyes.

Lucas scored 27 points despite a scoring drought of more than 27 minutes. She scored 11 points in the Lady Lions' flurry out of the gates, staking Penn State (10-3 overall, 1-0 Big Ten) to a 20-8 lead.

Then, after a long dormant period, she erupted again. With the outcome still in doubt -- Penn State led 65-60 with 7:03 to go -- she scored 16 of the Lady Lions' final 22 points as Penn State beat Iowa for the fifth straight time.

"She's tough," said Iowa guard Samantha Logic. "She can do everything on the floor. She sets up her screens very well."

Iowa slipped to 12-4 and 0-2, and most likely will drop out of the top 25.

"The Big Ten is a long season," said Melissa Dixon, who led the Hawkeyes with 22 points. "We have to use this loss and learn from it."

The Hawkeyes never held the lead Sunday. Penn State pulled away after an early 2-2 deadlock behind Lucas, leading by as much as 15 points before settling for a 38-30 halftime advantage.

While Lucas was quiet, the front line kept Penn State afloat. The Lady Lions owned a 50-34 rebounding advantage, including 16 offensive boards. Talia East (6-3) posted 10 points and 10 rebounds. Ariel Edwards (6-3) tallied 11 points. Six-foot-5 Tori Waldner hit pretty hook shots with both hands and finished with 10 points and eight boards.

Peyton Whitted (6-3) added eight points off the bench.

When Iowa's 6-4 center Bethany Doolittle went to the bench with four fouls at the 12:53 mark and the Hawkeyes down just 55-50, the mismatch was magnified.

"We did have an advantage," said Penn State Coach Coquese Washington. "I don't think we took advantage of it as early as we wanted to. But we got some second-chance points, which was good for us."

Bluder said, "It was tough to deny them. They were very big and very strong."

Logic posted 13 points and 12 assists. Theairra Taylor added 10, Kali Peschel nine.

The Hawkeyes host Minnesota on Wednesday.

PENN STATE 87, IOWA 71

At Iowa City

PENN STATE (87): Talia East 4-6 2-2 10, Ariel Edwards 5-15 1-1 11, Tori Waldner 5-7 0-0 10, Dara Taylor 6-12 5-6 17, Maggie Lucas 8-20 6-7 27, Candice Agee 0-0 0-0 0, Keke Sevillian 0-0 0-0 0, Alex Harris 0-0 0-0 0, Kaliyah Mitchell 1-3 2-4 4, Peyton Whitted 4-6 0-0 8. Totals 33-69 16-20 87.

IOWA (71): Kali Peschel 3-6 3-6 9, Bethany Doolittle 4-6 0-0 8, Melissa Dixon 8-22 2-4 22, Samantha Logic 5-11 2-2 13, Theairra Taylor 4-8 2-4 10, Alexa Kastanek 0-4 0-0 0, Ally Disterhoft 2-5 3-4 8, Claire Till 0-2 1-2 1. Totals 26-64 13-22 71.

Halftime: Penn State 38, Iowa 30. 3-point goals: Penn State 5-15 (Edwards 0-1, D.Taylor 0-2, Lucas 5-11, Whitted 0-1), Iowa 6-20 (Peschel 0-2, Dixon 4-11, Logic 1-2, T.Taylor 0-2, Kastanek 0-2, Disterhoft 1-1). Team fouls: Penn State 23, Iowa 25, Fouled out: none. Rebounds: Penn State 50 (East 10), Iowa 34 (Till 8). Assists: Penn State 12 (D.Taylor 4), Iowa 16 (Logic 12). Steals: Penn State 6 (three with 2), Iowa 7 (Logic 4). Turnovers: Penn State 19, Iowa 18.

Attendance: 6,230.


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