It is quite possible for Caitlin Clark to surpass the Division I women’s all-time scoring record in just one game.
On Thursday night at Carver-Hawkeye Arena, No. 2 Iowa defeated Penn State 111-93 behind 27 points from Clark. She finished her career with 3,489 points, but it ended a six-game run of performances with thirty or more points.
Kelsey Plum‘s all-time high of 3,527 points is 39 points away from her. On Super Bowl Sunday, when Iowa (22-2, 11-1 Big Ten) visits Nebraska (1 p.m. ET, FOX), it sets up a possible record-breaker. 11 times in her career, Clark has scored 40 points or more, with her career high standing at 46. On January 27, at home over the Cornhuskers, she scored 38.
Hannah Stuelke’s hot hand was primarily fed by Caitlin Clark, who finished with a season-high 15 assists. For the men’s and women’s programs, the sophomore forward’s career-high 47 points scored set an arena record. It broke Megan Gustafson‘s record of 48 points for the women’s program with two off.
Molly Davis scored 17 points in a well-balanced, bench-clearing 111-57 victory against Rutgers on February 12, 2023, the last time Clark did not lead Iowa in scoring. With 36 points against Drake in a non-conference game in November 2022, Monika Czinano was the only other player on the team to lead in scoring during the previous season.
As talk about Clark’s scoring prowess heats up, the victory over Penn State offered just another example of her superior court vision and IQ. She discovered Stuelke in transition early and frequently, setting the tone and assisting Iowa in pulling away without needing to pour in trademark triple plays through narrowing passing lanes. Stuelke made 17 of 20 field goals and 13 of 21 free throws. Kate Martin recorded a double-double of 16 points and 16 rebounds.
With four 3-pointers at crucial junctures and a quiet 21-point first half total, Clark instantly had her home fans excited as the game stayed close. Clark had a poor shooting night, going 8-of-23 (34.8%) and 4-of-14 from outside the arc, but those were his only 3-pointers of the contest.
She committed a career-high 12 turnovers against the Penn State defense, which angered her, but it also created passing openings, as she handed out seven assists in the first half of a 55-44 advantage. Halfway through the third, the lead grew to 20.
Caitlin Clark travels to Nebraska in pursuit of a record.
For breaking the Big Ten scoring record, Clark received recognition before to kickoff. She now sits second in the all-time scoring rankings, surpassing Ohio State guard Kelsey Mitchell‘s 3,402 points from last week. 66 points separated the 6-foot senior point guard from sole ownership of the lead going into Thursday night’s contest.
After she scored at least 35 points in four straight games, tickets for the game at Nebraska went up in price on the secondary market last week. Since January 10, she has not received a score lower than thirty. Pinnacle Bank Arena was completely sold out, as the Nebraska athletic department declared on January 24. On Thursday evening, they reaffirmed on social media that there were no more seats available.
Surpassing the 14,239 attendance from Iowa’s visit previous season, this is anticipated to be the biggest crowd in the program’s 50-year history for women’s events. Both the program’s history and the women’s first sell-out occur in the 11 years that they have performed in the arena. Still, Nebraska leads the Big Ten in attendance and has drawn strong audiences to the conference’s marquee games this season.
Ticket costs rising due to the Caitlin Clark Effect
The next Iowa game versus Michigan at home is not going to be cheap either. As of Thursday at 9 p.m. ET on Ticketmaster, the cheapest ticket is $308. There are a few thousand tickets listed.
Season ticket holders fill the arena to capacity for the whole program. Standing room only tickets are selling for at least $411, and seats cost $600 for the regular season finale, in which Clark is expected to break Maravich’s record.
Viewers watch Clark close to the record in millions of ways. A State Farm-sponsored in-game tracker was unveiled during the Big Ten Network broadcast to monitor Clark’s stats.
The amount of points required to break the record was displayed in huge letters in one bug in the upper left corner. Kelsey Plum’s points and games played were displayed above Clark’s by another “Road to the Record” error. These will be back for Iowa’s Sunday game on the main Fox channel versus Nebraska. To focus on Clark’s offensive possessions versus Maryland, Fox Sports unveiled a Clark Cam last week.