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Late Comeback Propels Lady Lions Past Fordham

by on December 06, 2017 9:37 PM

Penn State women’s basketball (8-2) was pushed to its limits Wednesday night by a Fordham squad (4-3) that exposed some of the Lady Lions’ weaknesses.

While Fordham led for a majority of the game, even getting all five starters over 10 points, incredible fourth quarter play from Amari Carter and Teniya Page helped Penn State comeback to beat the Rams, 65-60.

How It Happened

Fordham struck first as guard Bre Cavanaugh had a three bounce in on the game’s first possession. Amari Carter buried a pull up jumper from the top of the key, but Rams guard Lauren Holden struck right back with another three.

Fordham had size on Penn State, taking advantage of a small-ball Lady Lions lineup. Poor defense from Penn State gave the Rams plenty of open looks, including from the corners and wings. Fordham would get to a nine-point lead  before a three from Siyeh Frazier and a jumper from Teniya Page closed the gap to a four, with the Lady Lions down 20-16 at the end of the first.

Penn State kept trying to claw its way out of the deficit and another jumper from Page and two free throws from Jaida Travascio-Green closed the gap to just two points. Fordham kept the Lions in check, though, with more aggressive defense.

The most telling stat was in second-chance points, and Fordham led 14-0 in that category. Not only were they leading in rebounds, 13-7, but the Rams were also getting offensive rebounds to jumpstart their scoring. Fordham kept using this to their advantage, keeping the Lions at bay and pushing their lead back to six. Carter would score four quick points to bring the score back within two toward the end of the quarter, but back-to-back threes would put the Lions in an eight-point hole. A layup by Carter brought it back to six, and Penn State went into halftime down 34-28.

The third quarter continued to be rough for Penn State. A pattern emerged that the Lady Lions couldn't seem to shake: Fordham would be up, never more than nine, Penn State would close the lead, but Fordham would get a couple of quick buckets to take it back. 

While the Lady Lions shot 52 percent from the field, better than Fordham’s 42 percent, the Rams continued to dominate on the glass, extending their lead in the rebound department to 29-12, obliterating the Lions inside and preventing any momentum and second chance buckets for Penn State. It was clear that size was Fordham’s main advantage, the first time this season Penn State was really outmatched in that field.

Page and Carter scored all of Penn State’s points in the quarter, aside from a layup from Fraizer. With the forwards being bullied in the post, Penn State was forced on the outside where they shot a paltry 2-12 from three. The Rams looked to take a nine point lead into the fourth, but another late shot by Page cut it to seven as Fordham went into the final quarter leading 49-42.

Penn State opened the scoring with a 2-2 trip to the stripe from Kamaria McDaniel. It was the first points for the normally explosive freshmen who provides instant offense from the bench. A quick three pointer and a mid-range jumper from the Rams made it a 10-point lead.

Head coach Coquese Washington called a timeout to get her team on track, and Teniya Page heard her out. A layup from the junior followed by a huge three point play looked to be the spark Penn State needed with six minutes left in the game. Another three from Fordham erased some of Page’s heroics, but Carter picked up the pieces. A shot from her was followed by a massive three that showed how clutch the talented redshirt sophomore really is.

An empty trip to the line for the Rams was followed by a huge shot from Teniya Page to bring the Lady Lions to within one. After another stop on defense Page came back again and gave Penn State its first lead of the game. Then with 47.5 seconds on the clock, another Page jumper from the top of the key had her squad up by three. More clutch defense and free throws from Page and Travascio-Green sealed the Lady Lions comeback as they handed Fordham a 65-60 loss.

Player Of The Match

Teniya Page | Junior | Guard

She’s got ice in her veins. The Chicago product led Penn State to a fourth quarter comeback win with 27 points, eight rebounds, and five assists.

What’s Next?

The Lady Lions will head to play another New York team, this time going just over the PA/NY border to face off against St. Bonaventure on Saturday, kicking off a four game road trip. The game will start at 7 p.m.



Matt Paolizzi is a Penn State student and writer for OnwardState.com
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