STATE COLLEGE, Pa. — Tyra Grant scored 17 points and Penn State snapped a school-record 12-game losing streak with a 56-42 victory against South Carolina on Sunday, spoiling the Gamecocks debut of coach Dawn Staley.
Penn State finished last season with the record losing skid that began on Jan. 24.
Brianne O’Rourke added five assists and eight points for the Nittany Lions (1-0), including a 3-pointer that put Penn State up for good at 13:31 of the first half. Janessa Wolff chipped in with eight points.
South Carolina (0-1) landed three players in double figures, with C.J. Pace and Demetress Adams scoring 11 points each while Brionna Dickerson added 10.
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In the first half, the Gamecocks suffered from poor shooting, hitting 5-of-28 from the field.
“Coming into the season, I knew we would struggle to score,” Staley said.
Adams netted the game's first three points. She scored first on a put-back of a Dickerson missed 3-pointer and scored again on a free throw. Penn State got its forward Evelyn Lewis going as she also scored the Lions' first three points.
Carolina opened the second half on a defensive tear, scoring the first four points on steals and the resulting layups. The first came from Jewel May and the second from Adams.
Tturnovers helped Penn State to a 9-0 run and a 15-point lead with 11:25 left.
Staley had spent the past eight years at Temple.