Maggie Lucas’ 1000th career point kind of flew under the radar. Not only did it happen all the way in Minnesota during Super Bowl Sunday, but the game in which it happened contained the Lady Lions’ most exciting finish of the season.
We’ll probably write something in the paper about the milestone after we get to talk to Lucas on Wednesday, but it also deserves some recognition here. One thousand points is a big deal for any player, but Lucas became only the third sophomore in the history of the Lady Lions to achieve the feat in Sunday’s game.
Now, consider this. The only other two players in Penn State history to hit 1,000 during their sophomore season are Kelly Mazzante (2001-04) and Susan Robinson (1989-92). Mazzante is not only the greatest Lady Lion to ever play, she’s one of the best college women’s basketball players ever. She’s scored the most points in the history of the Big Ten for either men or women with 2,919.
Robinson ain’t too shabby, either. She’s second in Lady Lion scoring history with 2,253 points.
So, that consideration alone puts Lucas in some historic company. The thing is, Lucas has already recorded a better freshman season (scoring-wise) than both Mazzante and Robinson. When Lucas was a freshman, she didn’t even start, yet she scored 552 points. Mazzante scored 529 as a freshman, and Robinson scored 503 (they’re second and third in Penn State history in that category).
Now I’m going to speculate a little, but bear with me. The Lady Lions have played 23 games thus far in 2011-12, and Lucas (who has started in all of them) has notched 450 points. When Mazzante was a sophomore, she played in 35 games and scored 872 points. Robinson played in 32 and scored 633.
Let’s assume the Lady Lions play in 35 games this year, since that was their number last season and is a solid estimate. That puts Lucas on pace to score 685 points this season, which would give her 1,237 points at the culmination of her first two years of play. When Mazzante and Robinson were at that point, they had 1,401 and 1,136, respectively.
For those keeping count at home, Lucas is solidly on pace to be the second-most dangerous scorer in Penn State history after her first two seasons. She would have to have worse junior and senior seasons than her freshman year to avoid hitting 2,000 points if she does what she’s on pace for this season.