Rutgers comes away with win at Penn State
Coming off a tough loss from No. 17 Iowa and down 13-9 at the end of the first quarter at Penn State, the Rutgers women's basketball team needed to change the tides in a big way.
Enter fifth-year senior forward Stasha Carey — she scored 9 of her 19 points in the second quarter and had a 3-point play at the end of the half to give the No. 14 Scarlet Knights (16-4, 8-1) a 25-24 lead.
Rutgers would only trail for 29 seconds after it took the lead in the beginning stages of the third quarter, en-route to a 69-61 victory over the Nittany Lions (10-10, 3-6).
“You’ve got to be on top side right from the beginning and take your chance on that pass being thrown to her from the high post position,” said head coach C. Vivian Stringer.
Carey shot 8 of 16 from the field while grabbing a team-high seven rebounds and making all three of her team-high free throws.
For the second straight game, the Knights' opponent shot more than double the free throws as they did. Penn State made 22 of 28 free throws, while Rutgers made 8 of 11.
Penn State was whistled for 20 fouls, while the Knights were whistled for 15.
Rutgers extended its lead to 45-33 with 2:18 remaining in the third quarter, as sophomore forward Tekia Mack made a layup. In just 14 minutes, she had 8 points while making all three of her field goal attempts. Mack also grabbed five rebounds, and blocked two shots.
“Rutgers is a really good defensive team," said Lions head coach Coquese Washington. "(They) made it hard for us at certain times for us to get into a rhythm offensively."
Penn State dropped to 10-10 overall and 3-6 in the Big Ten.
The Knights led 47-39 entering the fourth quarter, but things in that period got a little dicey for them. The Lions started the fourth quarter on an 11-3 run, capped off by an Amari Carter layup with 6:14 remaining in the last quarter. Carter would finish with 14 points on the afternoon.
She was second on Penn State to Teniya Page who, despite just going 3 of 14 from the field, made 11 of 12 free throw attempts on her way to 18 points.
After the Lions pulled within 2 points, Rutgers finished the game on a 17-11 run, getting points from six different players over that timespan, including graduate student guard Charise Wilson and junior guard Ciani Cryor. Wilson was second on the team in scoring with 14 points, including going 3 of 5 from beyond the arc.
Cryor, who scored 9 points on 4 of 6 shooting, led the Knights with eight assists. Rutgers improved to 16-4 on the season and 8-1 in the Big Ten.
The Knights will welcome Indiana to the Rutgers Athletics Center (RAC) on Thursday at 7 p.m. The Hoosiers (16-5, 5-4) come to Piscataway with a 16-5 overall mark and a 2-2 road record in the Big Ten.
For updates on the Rutgers women's basketball team, follow @TargumSports on Twitter.