Hosting Bloomsburg Sunday afternoon, Penn State coach Coquese Washington and her team were able to test out the newer and faster-paced style of offense her and her coaching staff have transitioned to following last season’s 10th place finish in Big Ten scoring.
But with expected big performances from veteran players such as Kaliyah Mitchell, Peyton Whitted, Lindsey Spann and Sierra Moore — who together scored a combined 53 points of the Lady Lions’ 85 — it was the performance of the team’s younger members that highlighted the depth and true potential of this team.
Though not really considered a “young” player by both her coaches and teammates, sophomore guard Teniya Page shined on the court Sunday, both as a skilled player and as a leader, something Washington hopes to see more from her this season.
“I don’t look at Teniya as a younger player because she played a lot last year,” Washington said following the Lions’ 85-41 win. “When she decided to take over the game by controlling the pace and being more vocal on the defensive side, there was a noticeable difference in our execution. One of the challenges for her, this year, is to do that more consistently.”
Page, who saw the most minutes on the court for her team (32), led her team in scoring with 19 points, going 8 for 14 on her shots.
As for the Lions’ other youngsters, sophomores Jaylen Williams and Ashanti Thomas were able to see some playing time both finding scoring opportunities and being able to hit them.
Along with Page, Williams and Thomas, freshman Jaida Travascio-Green would demonstrate her value to this well-balanced blue and white team. In 22 minutes, Travascio-Green went 3-for-5 on 3-pointers, solidifying a near double-digit scoring match, something both her coach and teammates took notice of.
“I’m excited for all of our underclassmen,” Whitted said. “You saw Jaida and you couldn’t tell she was a freshman when playing. They’ve been able to adjust quickly to everything that comes with college basketball.”
“She’s a fantastic shooter,” Washington said. “When she’s open, we have to find her because she can knock [shots] down at a high pace.”