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Rayburn lifts Purdue over Penn State in Big Ten semis

Mar 4, 2012 - 5:01 AM Indianapolis, IN (Sports Network) - Brittany Rayburn put home the game-winning layup with 1.4 seconds remaining to lift Purdue to a 68-66 win over ninth- ranked Penn State in Big Ten Semifinal action on Saturday.

Nikki Greene drained a layup with 20 seconds to play to tie the game for Penn State, forcing the Boilermakers to call a timeout.

Out of the timeout, Rayburn got the ball on the left side and blew past the Penn State defense for the easy lay in.

Zhaque Gray threw up a prayer with one second left that fell short, knocking the Lady Lions out of the tournament.

Courtney Moses poured in 21 points to pace the Boilermakers. Rayburn finished with 14 points and six rebounds and Antionette Howard contributed a double- double with 13 points and 13 rebounds.

Purdue (23-8) will face sixth-seeded Nebraska, which knocked off defending champion Ohio State, in Sunday's title game.

Alex Bentley dropped in a game-high 22 points for the Lady Lions (24-6), while Greene ended with 12 points in the loss.

After a closely played first half, the Boilermakers held a 35-34 edge.

It remained close throughout the second 20 minutes and a three-point play by Mia Nickson with 3:13 to play pulled Penn State within 62-61.

Rayburn, though, answered with the next four points to give the Boilermakers a 66-61 edge with 43 seconds left, but a three-point play by Greene made it 66-64 in favor of Purdue with 31 seconds to go.

After shooting a respectable 42 percent in the first half, the Lady Lions struggled in the latter 20 minutes, hitting just 31 percent (11-of-35) of their shots.