UNIVERSITY PARK - As far as runs go, it will not even register among the season's biggest.
Not when the Penn State women's basketball team has put up 90 or more points seven times already, not when it has won four games by at least 30 points, not when it scored a season-low in points Sunday.
But the Lady Lions' modest stretch to open the second half of Sunday's 64-55 win against Delaware before 3,279 home fans was as important as any run they have had all season, proving to be the difference in their most difficult victory at the Bryce Jordan Center so far this season.
Penn State (10-2) went into halftime trailing 25-24, which, aside from a 3-0 deficit 18 seconds into its Nov. 21 game against South Carolina, was its only deficit in six home games this season.
Sophomores Alex Bentley and Nikki Greene scored six points apiece during a 16-6 run in the first six minutes, 13 seconds of the second half, giving Penn State a 40-31 lead it would not relinquish.
Penn State had not played in seven days because of final exams. That, along with Delaware's early transition defense, led to a slow start.
"Well I thought the first half, the pace of the game was too slow for us; it was their pace that they wanted and the score would've been in the 50s," Penn State coach Coquese Washington said. "And so what we wanted to do defensively was keep active defensively but push it in transition. I thought we did a better job to start the second half of creating some turnovers and creating some missed shots with our defense and then we did a good job of getting out in transition."
Delaware's Elena Delle Donne, who entered the game averaging a nation-best 26.2 points per game, finished with 25 points, 17 in the second half.
Freshman Maggie Lucas, Penn State's leading scorer, had 16 points and hit back-to-back 3-pointers at the 4:40 and 4:09 marks - both off assists from Bentley - giving the Lady Lions a 60-50 lead that ruined any hopes of a Blue Hens (6-2) comeback.
"I was just trying to keep running wide on the break, and if I was going to get it I was going to get it," Lucas said. "I thought it gave us a good little push in the end and they weren't above to recover after that run."
DELAWARE (6-2): Delle Donne 9-23 3-3 25; Acker 3-4 0-0 6; Parker 1-4 3-4 5; Riddick 1-1 3-7 5; Bailey 2-5 0-0 4; Carra 1-8 2-2 4; May 2-3 0-0 4; Kabongo 1-3 0-0 2. Totals 20-51 11-16 55.
PENN STATE (10-2): Lucas 6-13 0-0 16; Bentley 5-15 3-4 13; Greene 4-8 3-4 11; Nickson 3-6 2-2 8; Trogele 3-5 0-1 7; Edwards 2-4 1-2 5; Gray 1-11 0-0 2; Wolfe 1-1 0-0 2; Womack 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 25-63 9-13 64.
Halftime: Delaware 25, Penn State 24. 3-point goals: Delaware 4-12 (Delle Donne 4-8; Carra 0-4), Penn State 5-17 (Lucas 4-7; Trogele 1-1; Gray 0-7; Bentley 0-2). Rebounds: Delaware 34 (Carra 9), Penn State 40 (Trogele 12). Assists: Delaware 7 (Acker 3), Penn State 13 (Bentley 6). Total fouls: Delaware 15, Penn State 15. A: 3279