Hello from Happy Valley

Cal Sports Media

Maggie Lucas reached the 1,000-point mark during her sophomore campaign last season.

This is the first post by Maggie Lucas, who will be blogging about her experience with the Lady Lions for espnW this season. Lucas was an All-Big Ten performer a year ago and is on the preseason Wade watch list.

Hello from Happy Valley!

My name is Maggie Lucas, and I am a shooting guard for the Penn State Lady Lions. I am a home-state kid from Narberth, Pa., a small town outside of Philadelphia and right around the corner from where my all-time favorite player grew up, THE Kobe Bryant.

I fell in love with basketball veryyyy early in life. The first house I lived in didn't have a driveway, so we set up a hoop in the backyard. In no time, my two older brothers and I had turned the yard from green and grassy to a dirt court where 2-on-2 Lucas showdowns were commonplace. The permanent teams were my brothers versus my dad and me. Of course, my mom was the ultimate official.

From there, my parents began to encourage my interest by signing me up for league after league. I can admit now I was that little sister who wanted to follow her brothers everywhere and do everything they did. To be completely honest, I was a huge pest! When they were playing in the local boys' league for my dad, I wanted to be a part of the team, too, and persuaded my parents to let me play. To my brothers' credit, they were surprisingly welcoming and always had my back when we would hear the other teams saying, "This will be an easy win; there's a girl on that team."

Fast-forward to when I started my college decision process. I remember seeing Coquese Washington attending several of my AAU tournaments. My dad even pointed her out saying, "Hey Mags, that's the new PSU coach." Weeks later, my coach informed me Penn State had shown interest and wanted me to come take a look at the school. It may have had something to do with the huge Ohio State influence during my upbringing, but never in a million years did I think I would end up at Penn State. I took the visit, fell in love with the school, the coaching staff and the vision Coach Quese had for the program and myself.

About a year later, after receiving my first college offer from PSU, I verbally committed right before my junior year of high school. The decision was a huge surprise to many of my friends and family based on how Penn State was performing at the time. But from the moment I first stepped on campus, I knew I wanted to be a Lady Lion and play for Coquese Washington.

With the season right around the corner, I think I can speak for the entire Lady Lion team when I say we are ready to go! There is no better time of year than college basketball season, and I will be checking in all season long!