November 23, 2010

Penn State Hoops 8-0; Welcoming a New Blogger

Penn State basketball--both men's and women's--is having a very nice season so far, with both teams combining for an 8-0 regular season start, the best initial combined four-game kickoff since 2008 when the teams went 7-1 to start the year.

The Nittany Lions are getting better each game, with senior leadership from the likes of Talor Battle and Jeff Brooks. For the Lady Lions, with such a young but talented team, the start is quite encouraging. With several overtime games already this year, it should prove to be great experience for what is expected to be a tough Big Ten road this year.

The Nittany Lions

Penn State vs Fairfield -- W, 64-49
Jeff Brooks posted career highs in points and rebounds for the second-straight game and Talor Battle posted his 32nd career 20-point outing as Penn State led by as many as 25 in rolling past preseason MAAC favorite Fairfield, 64-49, at the Bryce Jordan Center Friday.

The victory improved Penn State to 3-0 for the third time under coach Ed DeChellis and marked just the seventh 3-0 start in the Big Ten era for the Lions who made a post-season appearance in each of their previous six 3-0 starts since joining the Big Ten.

Battle led Penn State with 20 points and added five rebounds on the night as he moved past DeRon Hayes (1,570) and Jamelle Cornley (1,579) into fourth all-time on the Nittany Lion scoring charts with 1,582 points.
Penn State vs. CCSU -- W, 77-61
Nittany Lion senior Jeff Brooks (Louisville, Ky.) was hot coming into Monday night, but not like this. The 6-8 forward went a perfect 7-of-7 from the floor and 6-of-6 from the line for a career-high 21 points as Penn State remained perfect at 4-0 with a 77-61 victory over Central Connecticut State in the Jordan Center.

Brooks, who came into Monday shooting 65.5 percent on the year and having posted career-best scoring outings in his previous two games, elevated his game even further Monday hitting from three, in the lane, pull-up jumpers and on a flying spin move in transition. Brooks left Monday leading Penn State with a 17.0 ppg average and shooting 72.2 percent from the floor, 62.5 percent (5-8) from three and 84.6 percent (11-13) from the foul line on the year as he joined Talor Battle, David Jackson and Drew Jones as the fourth active Nittany Lion to reach at least 500 career points.

"No. They told me after the game," Brooks said when asked if he knew he hadn't missed. "I was out there just in the moment just playing. As a player, I don't think about things like that. I just wanted to move on to the next play every play and try to make the next shot. I think tonight it just was going down."
Next up: Penn State travels to Oxford, MS to face the Ole Miss Rebels, Friday, Nov. 26 at 7 p.m. No TV broadcast has been announced. But you can always follow games on the FREE game tracker at

The Lady Lions

Lucas Tabbed Freshman of the Week
Penn State Lady Lion guard Maggie Lucas (Narberth, Pa.) was selected as the Big Ten Freshman of the Week after averaging 13.5 points, 2.5 rebounds, 2.0 assists and 1.5 steals in two wins for the Lady Lions. The rookie guard is the fourth different Lady Lion (Alex Bentley, Nikki Greene, Marisa Wolfe) to win Freshman of the Week honors since the award's inception last season.

Lucas continued her rock solid start for the Lady Lions with a pair of double-digit scoring performances last week. In the win over Oakland, she scored eight of Penn State's final 11 points in regulation, including a reverse layup with 8.4 seconds left to tie the game at 87-87 and for overtime. The Lions overcame a 12-point second half deficit to claim the win over the Grizzlies in overtime. Lucas accounted for 13 points, three rebounds and three assists against OU. In Sunday's win over SEC foe South Carolina, Lucas was 5-for-8 from the field, including 2-for-3 from three-point range, on the way to 14 points. She also chipped in one assist and two steals.

Penn State vs. Oakland -- W, 96-89
The Penn State Lady Lions (3-0) erased a 14-point first half deficit with a Maggie Lucas (Narberth, Pa.) reverse layup with eight seconds remaining in regulation and controlled overtime for a 96-89 win at Oakland (1-2) Thursday night. The Lady Lions, who move to 3-0 for the fifth consecutive season, landed seven players in double figures, led by junior Zhaque Gray (Chicago, Ill.) and freshman Ariel Edwards (Elmont, N.Y.) with 16 points each.

Gray added three rebounds and two assists, while Edwards also chipped in three rebounds and two blocks. Sophomore Alex Bentley (Indianapolis, Ind.) tallied 15 points, six assists and four steals in 38 minutes of action and Lucas accounted for 13 points, three rebounds and three assists off of the bench.

Senior Julia Trogele (Devon, Pa.) posted her fifth career double-double with 10 points and a career-high 15 rebounds. Sophomores Mia Nickson (Ashburn, Va.) and Gizelle Studevent (La Jolla, Calif.) both added 10 points each. It was a career high for Studevent, passing her previous high of seven points against Iowa in the Big Ten Tournament.
Penn State vs. South Carolina -- W, 78-48
The Penn State Lady Lions (4-0) continued their solid shooting from the field, making 50% (24-57) of their shots from the field and 66.7% (6-9) from three-point range, en route to a dominating 78-48 win over SEC foe South Carolina (2-2) Sunday at the Bryce Jordan Center. Senior Julia Trogele (Devon, Pa.) notched her second-straight double-double and the sixth of her career with a personal-best 19 points and 10 rebounds.

Sophomore Alex Bentley (Indianapolis, Ind.) added 14 points, four rebounds and two steals, while freshman Maggie Lucas (Narberth, Pa.) chipped in 14 points on 5-fo-8 shooting with two steals. Redshirt sophomore Mia Nickson (Ashburn, Va.) rounded out the double figure scorers with 11 points on a 5-for-7 effort from the field.
Next up: The Lady Lions head to the tropic for the 3-day Caribbean Challenge in Riviera Maya, Mexico. There they will face Utah, Hartford, and Green Bay. No TV broadcast has been announced. But you can always follow games on the FREE game tracker at

New Blogger

Just a brief announcement. will be welcoming aboard a new blogger next week. William Thomas is currently a student at Penn State, in the John Curley Center for Sports Journalism, and is the sports director for The Lion 90.7 in State College. At LBU, William will focus solely on blogging Penn State hoops, so you won't have to suffer through my ridiculously terrible posting--if you could even call it that--on the subject. So welcome William aboard, and be sure to check back for his first posts after the Thanksgiving weekend.

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