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Penn State Basketball: Nittany Lions Can't Climb Out Of Early Hole, Fall 74-57 To Purdue

by on January 13, 2016 10:39 PM

How It Happened:

Penn State hung tough for the opening 18 minutes or so of play, down just 28-22 with 3:15 to go in the half before a 10-3 Purdue run to close out the frame pushed the Boilermakers well ahead. Penn State actually trailed by 10 points in the first half before fighting back to within a two possession game thanks to an effective 10-of-15 outing from Brandon Taylor on the night.

An 8-3 run to open the second half put Purdue up 46-28 in first two minutes of the final frame and Purdue never looked back. The Boilermakers by as many as 24 before the Nittany Lions were able to slowly crawl back into the contest. A Taylor layup with 4:35 to go in regulation made it just a 14-point deficit but the Nittany Lions would only score twice more in the final minutes of regulation. 

Taylor led the way with 21 points for Penn State while Donovon Jack had a nice outing off the bench with 12 points and four rebounds before eventually fouling out. Payton Banks and Shep Garner went a combined 4-of-17 from the floor for just 11 points.

It was the big men in the paint for Purdue that got the job done though with a +17 rebounding margin and four Boilermakers scoring in double figures. Vince Edwards' 4-of-4 shooting from deep paced Purdue with 19 points while AJ Hammons added 13 points and 7 rebounds to the box score.

Player Of The Game:

Vince Edwards went 6-of-8 from the floor for 19 points while pulling down five rebounds. The forward took care of the ball on the outside as well with 4-of-4 shooting from deep and picked up just one foul all night. For the Nittany Lions it was Brandon Taylor putting together a solid 10-of-15 effort from the floor for 21 points but just one rebound to his name.

Stat Of The Game:

Penn State struggled on the glass as the Boilermakers took care of the rebounding with a 42-25 advantage on the boards including 14 offensive rebounds to just five for the Nittany Lions. Couple that with 15 Purdue assists and it was a long night in the paint and around the floor for Penn State's big men. The Nittany Lions didn't record a block either.

It Was Over When:

Down just six points with just over three minutes remaining in the first half it was a 10-3 run to close out the opening 20 minutes of play that turned Penn State's 28-22 deficit into a 38-25 halftime hole. An 8-3 run to open the second half forced an early timeout just over two minutes in but by the then the damage was already done. Down 46-28 the Nittany Lions managed to hang around but never found a real punch to get back within striking distance.

Up Next:

Penn State heads to Northwestern for a Saturday night meeting against the Wildcats on ESPNU before returning home to take on Wisconsin in Happy Valley next week.

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