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Penn State Basketball: More Heartbreak As Ohio State Wins 71-70 At Near Buzzer

by on February 28, 2017 10:55 PM

How It Happened:

Penn State trailed early in the game 10-3 as Ohio State started off strong, but Shep Garner's three and a quick burst from the Nittany Lions tied the late Tuesday night contest minutes later with 15:36 to go in the frame.

From there it was an entertaining but occasionally sloppy first half with both teams shooting the ball well but complementing an otherwise watchable outing with a slew of turnovers. Penn State's eight in the half helped the Buckeyes work back out to an eight point margin with just under four minutes to go in the half. Threes by Lamar Stevens and Garner kept that margin from growing any larger and a driving basket by Tony Carr with seconds to go in the half sent the teams into the break with Ohio State leading 40-36.

Garner continued his strong outing, opening the half with a deep three that cut the lead to just a point seconds into the final 20 minutes.

It only took three minutes for that early score to fully ignite Penn State's offense as the Nittany Lions rode Carr and Garner to a quick 48-41 margin. Ohio State answered quickly and by the 10:05 mark Penn State led by just a single point.

With 6:02 to go it was Penn State's offense that had gone cold and Ohio State's two free throws put the Buckeyes up 65-60. The Nittany Lions suddenly behind the eight-ball having made just one of their last 10 shots and without Mike Watkins who left the game minutes earlier with an injury, later described as cramps.

So Tony Carr's three with 5:11 to play proved to be a big moment in the game, cutting the margin to just two point despite a suddenly stagnant offense that had gone nearly five minutes without a basket.

Down four with a minute to play, yet another basket by Carr cut the lead to just two points and a travel on Ohio State gave the Nittany Lions the ball with 28 seconds to play.

It was Carr again, draining a deep three with nine seconds to play, but an end-to-end drive and score over Stevens and Julian Moore was all it took for the ball to find the bottom of the net six seconds later. A desperation heave from Carr didn't fall and the Nittany Lions did for the fifth time in Big Ten play in either overtime or by a single basket.

It Was Over When:

Jae'Sean Tate drove to the basket and banked it in with three seconds to go giving Penn State no timeouts and a long court to work with. Tony Carr's deep half court three didn't find the basket.

Stat Of The Game:

Ohio State turned the ball over 17 times total while Penn State turned it over just three times in the second half. The Nittany Lions also shot 42% from the field but just got five points from the bench while the Buckeyes managed 34 points from the reserves.

Tuesday night's game was the fifth loss this season for Penn State in the Big Ten decided by a single basket or in overtime.

Player Of The Game:

Tony Carr went 50% from the floor for 21 points including a late potential game-winning three. Garner poured in 20 points beyond that as the Nittany Lions went 11-for-31 from deep.

Up Next: 

Penn State heads on the road to face Iowa to close out the regular season.

Ben Jones covers Penn State football and basketball for He's on Twitter as @Ben_Jones88.
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