Third Time a Charm?

March 4, 2010

IOWA CITY, Iowa — Lisa Bluder and her 2010 University of Iowa women’s basketball team said earlier this week that it didn’t really matter who they played in Friday’s quarterfinal game of the 2010 Big Ten Conference Women’s Basketball Tournament.

Now they know and, while it probably still doesn’t matter to Bluder’s Bunch, fans of the Hawkeyes will be hoping at tip-off that the third time is a charm.

Iowa, the tournament’s No. 3 seed, will play Penn State Friday at approximately 1 p.m. Iowa time. The Nittany Lions – the No. 6 seed – defeated Minnesota 63-52 on Thursday to advance. The game will be televised live from Conseco Fieldhouse by the Big Ten Network.

Penn State defeated Iowa twice during the regular season. The Hawkeyes’ Kamille Wahlin sank a career-best seven three-point shots en route to a 27-point performance, but that wasn’t good enough on Dec. 28 when the Hawkeyes were dealt a 77-73 loss in overtime by the Nittany Lions in the game played at Penn State.

Two week later in Iowa City, Jaime Printy scored 26 points but the Hawkeyes allowed a nine-point lead with nine minutes to play slip away and lost, 68-62, to the Nittany Lions. “This one was a tough one for us to lose,” Bluder said after the game.

It also served as motivation, however. The Hawkeyes rebounded to win nine of their next 12 games to end the 2010 Big Ten regular season as arguably the hottest team in the league.

Iowa and Penn State will tip 25 minutes after the conclusion of Friday’s first game, No. 2 seed Michigan State against No. 7 seed Michigan. The winners of Friday’s games will meet at 4 p.m. Saturday in the first of two semifinal games.

All games of the 2010 Big Ten Tournament – except the Sunday’s championship game – will be televised live by BTN. The title game will be televised live by ESPN2.