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Lady Lions Hang Tough But Come Up Short Against No. 17 Indiana

by on January 23, 2020 9:59 PM

Penn State women’s basketball (7-12, 1-7 Big Ten) showed up with a gritty effort but fell short against No. 17 Indiana (15-5, 5-3 Big Ten) 76-60 on Thursday night at the Bryce Jordan Center.

Kamaria McDaniel and Siyeh Frazier led the way for the Lady Lion offense in the loss, tallying 24 and 14 points, respectively.

How It Happened

Head coach Carolyn Kieger’s starting lineup featured guards Makenna Marisa, Siyeh Frazier, Kamaria McDaniel, Shay Hagans, and forward Lauren Ebo.

After going 0-for-4 as a team to start the game, Frazier opened scoring for the Lady Lions with a three from the top of the key. McDaniel knocked down a pair of free throws on the next possession, and a couple of minutes later found the net yet again with a clutch three-pointer.

A Mya Bembry and-one basket capped off an overall impressive first quarter for the Lady Lions, and they only trailed 22-18 by the end of it.

Frazier went back to work in the second, sinking a three to kick off the quarter and setting the tone for the rest of the half. Fellow splash sister McDaniel quickly followed suit with a trey of her own, helping Penn State retake the lead with a little under seven minutes to go in the quarter.

Frazier and Marisa connected for back-to-back threes at the end of the quarter to boost the Lady Lion offense yet again. Overall, Penn State shot 55% from beyond the arc and 48% from field-goal range in the first half, keeping the game close and competitive. Kieger’s squad headed to the locker room at halftime trailing 39-38.

Things started to fall apart in the third. Indiana scored on its first two possessions and went on a 10-0 run that ended when Marisa finally found the net with 5:41 remaining. Anna Camden knocked down a much-needed three, and Ebo cut the deficit to seven with a crafty reverse layup several possessions later.

However, Penn State’s struggles continued on the boards and Indiana capitalized on plenty of easy opportunities to extend the lead to 58-49 with a final quarter of basketball remaining.

A Frazier and-one early in the fourth cut the deficit to single digits. The momentum seemed to be shifting in favor of the Lady Lions, but this faded after a charge taken by Marisa was overturned and called a blocking foul.

Ultimately, Penn State could never truly recover from the dreadful first few minutes of the second half. Indiana cruised to victory, winning 76-60.

Takeaways

  • McDaniel and Frazier form a lethal on-court duo. The pair combined for 38 points on five three-pointers to help the Lady Lion offense against a tough Indiana opponent. These guards continue to be the most consistent and reliable options for Carolyn Kieger’s offense.
  • Penn State certainly put up a fight. It’s extremely difficult to beat a No. 17 ranked team that shoots 54% from the field. With the exception of the first few minutes of the third quarter, the Lady Lions managed to keep the game close — which is a welcoming and positive sign.
  • Makenna Marisa played 39 minutes Thursday night, more than anyone else on the team. She’s definitely taken on a huge role as a freshman and is evolving into a leader on the court. This experience and playing time will pay big dividends in the coming years.

What’s Next

The Lady Lions will travel to West Lafayette to face Purdue on Sunday. Tipoff is scheduled for 2 p.m. and the game will be streamed live on BTN+.



Rory Pelella is a Penn State student and Onward State contributor.
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