Dec. 30, 2004
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. – The No. 7/9 Ohio State women’s basketball team (11-2; 0-1 Big Ten) opened Big Ten play with a 69-62 loss vs. Penn State (6-5; 1-0 Big Ten) Thursday at the Bryce Jordan Center in University Park, Pa. Sophomores Jessica Davenport and Brandie Hoskins scored 20 and 18 points, respectively, to lead the Buckeyes. Ohio State was up in the first half by six points, but Penn State tied the game before the break. The Lady Lions led by as many as 12 in the second half and secured the conference win despite the Buckeyes pulling to within five points with six seconds left in the game.
Ohio State established a six-point lead off two-consecutive Hoskins layups with 5:27 remaining in the first half. Penn State’s Jennifer Brenden sank a three and Tanisha Wright hit a jumper to pull PSU to within one point, 24-23, at 3:16. Buckeye rookie Marscilla Packer drained a 3-pointer and gave the Buckeyes a 27-23 edge, but Lady Lion Jennifer Harris scored four unanswered points to knot the game at 27 after 20 minutes of action.
Penn State opened the second half on an 11-2 scoring run. Harris netted nine of the 11 points as the Lady Lions took a quick 38-29 lead with 16:30 left in the contest. Penn State extended its advantage to 11 points, 47-36, off a Harris jumper at 10:24. The Buckeyes were able to pull the game to six points, 50-44, when Hoskins hit a field goal at 8:25. The Lady Lions went on a 6-0 run and went up 56-44 with 5:40 to play.
The Buckeyes cut the lead to single digits and came as close as five points, 67-62, off an Ashley Allen 3-pointer with six seconds left, but Penn State was 8-for-8 from the free-throw line in the final minute to secure the victory.
Ohio State entered the game as the Big Ten’s top shooting squad with a .545 average from the field and a .809 mark from the charity stripe, but shot .444 (24-54) for the game and .700 (7-10) from the free-throw line vs. PSU. The Buckeyes had 17 turnovers vs. Penn State’s 11.
Davenport added nine rebounds to her 20-point performance. Allen scored eight points, Stephanie Blanton added seven points and Caity Matter netted six scores.
Penn State was led by Harris and Wright, who each tallied 22 points, and point guard Jess Strom. Strom, who was 6-for-6 from the free-throw line in the final minute, grabbed a game-best 12 boards and tallied nine assists, nine points and five steals in 40 minutes of play.
The Buckeyes play host to No. 20/20 Purdue at 2 p.m. Sunday in Value City Arena.