Lady Lions to appear on national TV at least 10 times in 2012-13

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. -- The defending Big Ten Champion Penn State women's basketball team will appear on national television at least 10 times during the regular season in 2012-13, it was announced by the Big Ten Conference office Thursday (Sept. 27). The Lady Lions are scheduled to have three games televised on ESPN2 and at least seven contests on the Big Ten Network. In addition to the television arrangements, the Big Ten also announced game times for the 2012-13 season.

The Lady Lions will host Nebraska (2 p.m. Sun., Jan. 13), Purdue (7 p.m. Mon., Feb. 4) and Michigan State (2 p.m. Sun., Feb. 10) on ESPN2. Penn State's Big Ten Network broadcasts will kick off with a non-conference contest against Georgetown at the BJC at noon Sun., Dec. 9. The Lady Lions will appear on the BTN during the conference schedule at Michigan State (Sun., Jan. 6; time TBA), at Michigan (6:30/7:30 p.m. Mon., Jan. 21), versus Minnesota (6:30 p.m. Thurs., Jan. 24), at Ohio State (1 p.m. Sun., Jan. 27), at Indiana (6:30 p.m. Thurs., Feb. 7) and versus Michigan in the Seventh Annual Pink Zone at Penn State at 1p.m. Sun., Feb. 24. The final two regular season games at Minnesota (Thurs., Feb. 28) and at Nebraska (Sun., March 3) will be Big Ten Network wildcard games and could be aired on the network.

The Lady Lions open their schedule with an exhibition game against California (Pa.), which is coached by former Lady Lion Jess Strom, as part of a women's-men's doubleheader at 2 p.m. Sat., Nov. 3. The Nittany Lion basketball team will face Philadelphia University following the Lady Lions' game.

The regular season opens with a home contest against Howard at 2 p.m. Sun., Nov. 11. Penn State hits the road for a midweek meeting with SEC foe Texas A&M in College Station at 8 p.m. Wed., Nov. 14, before returning to the BJC to face Lafayette at 2 p.m. Sun., Nov. 18.

Penn State will head to the West Coast for the Thanksgiving holiday, participating in a tournament at Cal State Northridge. The Lady Lions will face WNIT participant Detroit in the opening game of the tournament at 5:30 p.m. on Fri., Nov. 23. Penn State will then face either the host Matadors, a WNIT selection last year, or South Alabama in the championship/consolation contest at 3/5:30 p.m.

The Lady Lions remain on the road for the Big Ten/ACC Challenge game at NCAA participant Miami (Fla.) at 7:05 p.m. Thurs., Nov. 29. Penn State returns to the Bryce Jordan Center for a weekend date with Fairleigh Dickinson at 2 p.m. Sun., Dec. 2, before visiting seven-time National Champion Connecticut to open a home-and-home series with the Huskies at 7 p.m. Thurs., Dec. 6. The rematch of the 2012 NCAA Sweet Sixteen meeting will be Penn State's first trip to Connecticut since Dec. 1, 1981. The Lady Lions are 3-7 all-time against the Huskies.

Penn State returns to the friendly confines of the Bryce Jordan Center to meet NCAA Tournament participant Georgetown on Sun., Dec. 9 at noon. The Lady Lions are back on the road to visit ACC foe Virginia Tech at 7 p.m. Wed., Dec. 12, before heading back home for their final two non-conference games against South Dakota State at 2 p.m. Sun., Dec. 16, and NJIT on Sun., Dec. 23. The NJIT contest will be part of a men's-women's doubleheader at the BJC beginning at 11 a.m. with the Nittany Lions taking on New Hampshire.

The Lady Lions open their Big Ten schedule at the Bryce Jordan Center against Northwestern at 7 p.m. Thurs., Jan. 3, before traveling to Michigan State on Sun., Jan. 6 for a BTN contest. After a bye date, the Lady Lions then return home for back-to-back home games against Nebraska (2 p.m. Sun., Jan. 13) on ESPN2 and Wisconsin (7 p.m. Thurs., Jan. 17).

Penn State visits Michigan for a Monday evening Big Ten Network contest on Jan. 21 and then returns to the friendly confines of the BJC to meet Minnesota at 6:30 p.m. Thurs., Jan. 24, on the BTN. The Lady Lions close out the month of January with road games at Ohio State (1 p.m. Sun., Jan. 27) on the BTN and Wisconsin (8 p.m. Thurs., Jan. 31).

The Lady Lions will appear on ESPN's Big Monday when they host Purdue at 7 p.m. Feb. 4 on ESPN2. Last season on ESPN's Big Monday, Penn State clinched its first Big Ten regular-season title since 2004 with a win over Ohio State.

After traveling to Indiana (6:30 p.m., Thurs., Jan. 7) on the Big Ten Network, Penn State hosts Michigan State on ESPN2 at 2 p.m. Sun., Jan. 10, before hitting the road to face Iowa for a Valentine's Day contest at 8 p.m.

Following a bye date, Penn State closes out its home slate against Illinois (7 p.m. Wed., Feb. 20) and with the Seventh Annual Pink Zone at Penn State against Michigan at 1 p.m. Sun., Feb. 24, on the BTN. The Lady Lions finish out the regular-season with a pair of road games at Minnesota (Thurs., Feb. 28) and Nebraska (Sun., Mar. 3).

The Big Ten Tournament will be played March 7-10 at the Sears Center in Hoffman Estates, Ill.

Leading the way for the Lady Lions is the All-American backcourt tandem of senior Alex Bentley (Indianapolis, Ind.) and junior Maggie Lucas (Narberth, Pa.). Bentley garnered first team All-Big Ten honors for the second-straight season and also took home honorable mention WBCA All-America accolades. She was second in the Big Ten and in the Top 20 nationally in steals, averaging 3.0 per game. The Big Ten All-Defensive team choice led Big Ten action with 49 steals in 16 games, becoming the first Lady Lion to lead the league in steals since Jess Strom did it in back-to-back years in 2003-04 and 2004-05. Additionally, Bentley was 11th in the conference in scoring (14.1), fourth in assists (4.7) and seventh in assist-to-turnover ratio (1.4). Lucas earned first team All-Big Ten and honorable mention Associated Press All-America honors after finishing third in the conference in scoring at a 19.5 per game clip and was just the fourth different Lady Lion to score more than 600 points in a season with 642 tallies on the year. Lucas was also Top 10 in the league in free throw percentage (.886 - 3rd), three-point field goal percentage (.410 - 3rd) and three-pointers made (2.5 - 2nd). The Narberth, Pa. native is just the third sophomore in school history to reach 1,000 points.

The Lady Lions also return starters Nikki Greene (Diboll, Tex.) and Mia Nickson (Ashburn, Va.). Greene garnered All-Big Ten third team accolades after accounting for 9.8 points and a team-best 7.8 rebounds. Greene ranked in the Top 10 in the Big Ten in rebounding (4th), field goal percentage (7th - .472) and blocked shots (5th - 1.4). Her 176 career blocks are fifth in school history. Nickson fought through a series of injuries to claim All-Big Ten honorable mention honors as she averaged 8.5 points and 7.8 rebounds per game. Additionally, she was named to the NCAA Tournament Kingston All-Region team after tallying 19 points, five rebounds and two steal against eventual National Semifinalist Connecticut. In Big Ten play, Nickson was eighth in rebounding (7.5) and 10th in field goal percentage (.455).

Lady Lion Basketball season tickets are available by calling 800-NITTANY. Season tickets are $99 for adults and $50 for youth (12 and under), this includes a Nittany Lion Kids Club Membership for 2012-13. The PNC Flex Books are available again this year for $99. The Flex Book gives fans 12 vouchers, 10 that can be redeemed in any combination for Nittany Lion and Lady Lion Basketball tickets throughout the year and two extra vouchers for the Nittany Lions' Coaches Vs. Cancer game and the Lady Lions' Pink Zone game.

The Lady Lions are on Twitter. Follow sports information contact Kris Petersen (@ladylionsid) and the Lady Lions and coaches (@pennstatewbb) to get the inside scoop. The Lady Lions are also on Facebook at www.facebook.com/pennstateladylions.

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Last Updated October 03, 2012