Work in Sports
Three in a row
Purdue knocks off Penn State in Big Ten final
Posted: Sunday March 05, 2000 10:55 PM
INDIANAPOLIS (AP) -- Purdue picked a perfect time to set a season-high for 3-point goals.
Katie Douglas had five of Purdue's 10 3-pointers and scored 24 points as No. 18 Purdue beat No. 5 Penn State 71-63 to win its third consecutive Big Ten women's basketball tournament.
Purdue (22-7) overcame 25 turnovers to earn the conference's automatic bid to defend its NCAA championship. Camille Cooper and Kelly Komura, who had 10 of the turnovers, each scored 17 points as the Boilermakers avenged two regular-season losses to the Lady Lions.
Penn State (26-4) trailed most of the game as it had its 10-game winning streak snapped.
"Every time we got something going, that (3-pointers) came back to get us. That was the most glaring thing other than their rebounds," Penn State coach Rene Portland said.
The Boilermakers took a 12-2 lead as Penn State missed its first four shots from the field and trailed only twice in the second half.
Penn State took a 57-54 lead on a 3-pointer by Chrissy Falcone followed by two free throws by Helen Darling, who led the Lady Lions with 16 points and was the tournament's most valuable player.
"There was never any doubt that we'd win. Even when there were 32 seconds on the clock, I still didn't think that we would lose," Darling said.
Douglas then tied the game for the final time at 57 with a 3-pointer and Komura's 3-pointer put Purdue ahead 60-57 with 4:28 to go. Two free throws by Darling made it 62-57 with 3:50 remaining.
Purdue's previous high for 3-pointers was seven against Michigan State.
"We didn't do a good job defending the three. When we got up by three, we relaxed and they were shooting the three very well," Darling said. "We didn't recognize that and step up and play for penetration."
Penn State, which had won its first overall Big Ten championship in the regular season, reduced its deficit to three on two free throws by Darling with 3:12 left and trailed 67-63 after Lisa Shepherd's layup.
The Lady Lions had trailed by 10 points twice in the first half when the Boilermakers had 14 turnovers.
Purdue led 32-26 at halftime with Penn State shooting just 27 percent (8-of-30). The Boilermakers had taken a 20-10 lead on a 3-pointer by Douglas with 12:28 left in the half. Penn State responded with nine straight points as Purdue went more than five minutes without scoring.
"Everybody was down on us and not giving our team credit," Douglas said. "That experience we had last year and all the adversity we've been through, it (the championship) was a great moment."
Douglas, Cooper, Penn State's Andrea Garner and Tauja Catchings of Illinois joined Darling on the all-tournament team selected by the media.