This was a game that was a paradox to me. How so many things could go wrong in a game and yet the sisters had a chance with 3 minutes left when they drew within two. Yet, the paradox continued as they turned the ball over and rushed the second offensive possession to let the game get away. They lost 66-59. What went right in this one? This will be the short list. I have to give them credit for making a comeback after being down by double digits. They didnâ€™t come back using upper classmen. They didnâ€™t come back by hitting clutch free throws. Instead it was the freshmen hitting some key shots including threeâ€™s by Williamson. Unfortunately, the last time ISU drew within two they had a personal foul and a bench technical (obviously not for Bill yelling something) that put the game out of reach. Out of reach only because of the way the team was shooting. What else went right? Some of the freshmen didnâ€™t shirk while in their first really tough game. Keep in mind this was a Penn State team that had 20 fouls in the first half alone. They were beating on our girls and the refs appeared to be so clueless at times that even the announcers were starting to make fun of them. The only other bright spot was Pop pulling down 17 boards. So what else went right? Not much tonight. Not much at all. What went wrong? This could get lengthy but Iâ€™ll try to focus. Prior to the game I stated the keys were going to be (1)defense, (2) the inside game, and (3) making free throws. Unfortunately the ladies failed in all three areas. The defense couldnâ€™t keep up with PSUâ€™s running game and that led to way too many easy shots. They outhustled us for many key offensive boards. The inside game. This is where we have upperclassmen should be providing the ompf to get over the top. Big C only shot the ball FIVE times. Part of this was due to her foul trouble, but FIVE times? Even worse was she only hit one shot. Pop. Ugly game. Very ugly. She reverted to her bricklaying free throw shooting. This was a night when it was critical as she got fouled frequently. Five for 13 at the line is horrid. Three for 8 from the floor is bad. She hustles her butt off and fights for everything, but she left her offense in the locker room tonight. Free Throws. This could earn its own paragraph. Bottom line? 19 of 35. 54%. Sit back and look at those numbers and keep in mind that many were front ends of 1 and 1 opportunities. Iâ€™ve been saying this since the last game that free throws will make or break this team. Tonight it broke them. Rather than being in the lead they were constantly battling from behind and their shooting at the line usually made it worse. Moody. One for 11 from the field. One assist. For all the hope we were seeing in her so far this season, she finally had her first nasty game. These are going to happen. When they do someone else has to step up and make the plays. Cole? Oh for 1 from the field and 1 assist. Loz? Two for 6 and 1 assist. The entire point guard court failed to get the job done tonight. While she didnâ€™t have an outstanding shooting night, Jess really played a pretty tough game. Three for 7 from the field with some tough drives for points. Seven points, 3 boards, 2 assists, 1 block and 1 steal. Not a bad line at all. Sheâ€™s like Pop. You know she is going to go 100% all of the time. Circle K (Mays) put in some good minutes scoring 5 points and pulling down 4 boards. Williamson was probably the player of the game. She hit some clutch shots and was high scorer with 15. Hit 4 three pointers at seriously critical moments. This is a pretty easy game to sum up. You simply canâ€™t do nearly everything badly and expect to win against a top 20 team. This was a game we could easily have won. You correct any of the three game factors I mentioned and we win. You canâ€™t shoot barely 30% from the field, barely 20% from 3 point land, and 54% from the charity stripe (this may be the season of giving, but the charity stripe is the other team giving to you!) and expect to win. Even with Pop ripping down boards we were outrebounded. Even with PSU committing an astronomical 32 personal fouls we couldnâ€™t take advantage. Points off turnovers? ISU 10, PSU 19. Their stats werenâ€™t anything to call home about, but they hit free throws at the end of the game to ice it and made the key plays they needed to win. So what does this say about this team? Well, the on air announcers keep talking about how young they are. We do have four frosh who play regularly and are contributors. We only have two seniors who arenâ€™t contributing much right now. So, yes, this is a young team and they hung with a top 20 team away from home. We know the frosh will be up and down. Today it was Brynn and not Moody who shined. Tomorrow who knows? Iâ€™m hoping this will be a good thing to teach some lessons. Sometimes you have to experience the sky falling to get better. As Coach F. stated last weekâ€¦there are some players that are going to need to wake up and realize what they need to do to represent ISU the way they are expected. Tomorrow will be a big day. Will they bounce back in the consolation game? Who will lead the way? Will Pop recover from her one game free throw funk? Iâ€™m sticking with the same three keys to victory. Defense. Free Throw Shooting, and establishing the inside game. Until thenâ€¦.