Riding off the momentum of back-to-back huge victories, Penn State (11-7, 3-2 Big Ten) hosted the Hoosiers hoping for another big conference win. Indiana (12-6, 2-3 Big Ten) came into the Bryce Jordan Center with as impressive wins — like against No. 2 Kansas and No. 3 North Carolina — as it has head-scratching losses. Penn State came back from a double-digit deficit late to tie it with four seconds, but James Blackmon Jr. hit a three at the buzzer to take down the Nittany Lions 78-75
How It Happened
Julian Moore got off to a fast start for the Nittany Lions — winning the tipoff in his fifth-consecutive start and scoring the team’s first six points. Once his teammates got going as well, Penn State managed to open up an early lead on the Hoosiers. Penn State’s lead reach its peak at seven just about midway through the first half, but Indiana found an offensive groove after a four-minute scoring drought.
Once Indiana found its groove, there wasn’t much Penn State could do to stop the momentum — other than to try to keep up on the offensive end. The two teams traded buckets for a stretch late in the first half, but an 8-0 run from the Hoosiers heading into the media timeout with three minutes left in the half was enough to secure a lead for them at the break.
The Hoosiers managed to have a high-scoring half because of their depth — finishing the first 20 minutes of play without a scorer in double figures. Penn State had Tony Carr to keep pace with Indiana. His 13 points, eight of which came from the foul line, helped Penn State keep the Hoosiers within striking distance as they had a 44-37 lead at the midway point.
There was no slow down in offensive production for either side to start the second half. Penn State got the Hoosier lead down to as low as four in the first couple minutes of play, but a slew of turnovers on multiple consecutive possessions allowed Indiana to start to run away with it.
Indiana led by 14 with about nine minutes left in the action, but Penn State crawled back late with a number of points on the fastbreak plus a Tony Carr three-pointer to cut it to six. The three put Carr at 22 points, a career-high for the freshman.
Indiana missed back-to-back one-and-one’s and Shep Garner hit a three to cut the Penn State deficit to two with 39 seconds left. Lamar Stevens scored hits two free throws with four seconds left after stealing the ball from Indiana and getting fouled on the drive. But it was James Blackmon Jr. who would be the hero after Indiana’s timeout, hitting a three at the buzzer to win 78-75.
Player Of The Game
Tony Carr | Guard | Freshman
The Penn State freshman helped lead a late charge on his 24-point career day, but it wasn’t enough to defeat the Hoosiers.
The Nittany Lions will be back on the road Saturday to take on Purdue. Tipoff is at 7 p.m. and you can catch all the action live on BTN.