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The Smaller Side of Penn State Sports - 3/20/12

The Lady Lions are taking on LSU tonight in the round of 32 of the Women's NCAA Tournament
The Lady Lions are taking on LSU tonight in the round of 32 of the Women's NCAA Tournament

It's been awhile since our last update on some of the lesser followed sports at Penn State so there is a lot to catch up on!

Overall Record: 3-14
Last Two Weeks: 1-8

It's been a rough season for the baseball team. After winning the first game against Samford on their spring break trip, they lost their next six games before squeaking out a win against UAB. There is cause for hope however. This past weekend the Lions traveled to North Carolina to take on #25 ECU. While Penn State was swept in the series, they lost the first two games by only one run. They took a 4-2 lead into the 7th in the series finale before giving up five unanswered runs to lose the game. Penn State opens up Medlar Field this Wednesday with a game against Pitt before hosting a series with Indiana this weekend.

Women's Basketball:

The women's basketball team earned a 4 seed in the Women's NCAA tournament. They won their opening round game against UTEP and are set to take on LSU tonight at 9:40 on ESPN2/ESPN3.

Men's Gymnastics:
Overall Record: 6-1 (ranked #4)
Last Two Weeks: 2-0

The gymnastics team traveled to Puerto Rico on March 9th where they bested the Puerto Rico National Team by a score of 339.200-337.300. Despite this, they dropped to #4 in the national rankings. On Saturday, they hosted #6 Minnesota. Penn State set two program records during this meet, and they also achieved the highest score out of any school this season as they beat Minnesota 359.300-347.900. Junior Felix Aronovich was chosen as the Big Ten Gymnast of the Week as he set a career high in the all-around. Penn State set new program records in pommel horse and still rings, breaking marks they had set earlier this year. Penn State hosts Temple in Rec Hall on Saturday, which is the last match prior to the Big Ten Championships.

Women's Gymnastics:
Overall Record: 7-1 (ranked #12)
Last Two Weeks: 2-0

The women's team closed out their season with tight wins over Pitt (196.425-195.075) and Maryland (196.500-195.550) and have earned the #2 seed for the Big Ten Championships this weekend. Three gymnasts were selected to the All Big Ten teams. Junior Sharaya Musser made the first team, while Senior Whitney Benckso and Junior Madison Merriam made the second team.

Men's Ice Hockey:
Overall Record: 29-4-1
Last Two Weeks: 0-1

The Icers final season came to a screeching halt as they were upset by the 13th seeded Oakland Grizzlies. Oakland and Penn State traded goals in the first period which ended in a 2-2 tie. The Grizzlies notched the only goal in the second, and extended their lead to 4-2 early in the third. Penn State struck back quickly to get the game to 4-3, but Oakland sealed the win with a goal with 1:51 to play. The Icers have to be disappointed that they weren't able to walk away with a final ACHA Championship.

Men's Lacrosse:
Overall Record: 3-3 (ranked #17, 0-1 in conference play)
Last Two Weeks: 0-2

After a strong start to the season, the wheels have come off a bit for the lacrosse team. The then-ranked #11/13 Denver Pioneers. Denver took a 3-0 lead, but after Penn State cut the lead to 3-2, Denver scored seven straight goals to take a 10-2 halftime lead. The teams each scored four apiece in the 2nd half and Denver left Happy Valley with a 14-6 win. Penn State opened up conference play against #3/4 ranked UMass. In a back and forth game, Penn State held leads of 4-3 and 7-5 before a 4th quarter rally by UMass left Penn State trailing by a goal with time running out. The Lions scored with 5:30 left to play to send the game to overtime, but the Minutemen scored with 2:52 remaining in OT to win it. Penn State hosts #10/11 Lehigh tonight at 7 pm.

Women's Lacrosse:
Overall Record: 7-2 (ranked #11, 1-0 in conference play)
Last Two Weeks: 3-1

Penn State dropped an overtime game to Loyola 12-10, but they've responded nicely with three wins over Delaware, Hofstra and Vanderbilt. The Lions host William & Mary on Sunday.

Overall Record: 7-15
Last Two Weeks: 1-8

Much like the men's team, the women are struggling mightily this season. Penn State beat Virginia Tech on the 9th to improve to 7-9, but then dropped six straight games where they were held to one run or less five times (including three shutouts). Rain shortened their weekend tournament, cancelling the final three games. This weekend Penn State will travel to Ann Arbor to open up the Big Ten schedule against Michigan.

Men's Volleyball:
Overall Record: 14-3 (ranked #8, 7-0 in conference play)
Last Two Weeks: 1-2

Penn State stumbled a bit on their west coast trip to California. The Lions took Pepperdine to 5 sets before losing the match, but they were swept by USC. They righted the ship on Saturday though as they swept St. Francis. Penn State travels to NJIT and Rutgers this weekend.

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