Penn State men’s basketball (2-0) defeated the Fairleigh Dickinson Knights (0-2) Sunday evening by a score of 81-57. Tony Carr led all scorers with 20 points and Josh Reaves showcased his athleticism from the beginning. After struggling to find offensive consistency last game against Campbell, Penn State had no problem in this game. The Nittany Lions knocked down 45% of their shots and forced 31 turnovers.
How It Happened
Following the Nittany Lions last game against Campbell, Penn State struggled to get into a rhythm offensively to begin the game. It took Penn State two minutes just to score its first points of the game off of two Tony Carr free throws. Following a Knight’s three-pointer, Lamar Stevens made the first field goal of the game for the Lions 3:23 into the game to cut the Knights’ lead to 7-4.
At the first time out of the game with 16:03 to go in the first half, Penn State trailed the Knights 10-5. Tony Carr and Mike Watkins contributed points from the free throw line, and Lamar Stevens still had the only made basket for the Lions.
The Knights were able to convert their first threes of the game, increasing their lead to 14-7. The Nittany Lions then went on a 5-0 run thanks to a Josh Reaves three pointer and Mike Watkins fast break dunk with 11:52 to go in the first half. Following a Knights basket, Deivis Zemgulis knocked down a three of his own to cut the lead to 16-15 with 11:17 to go.
The Nittany Lions were able to take their first lead of the game off of a Josh Reaves three pointer, but gave it up seconds later on a Knights and-one. Josh Reaves scored down low with 10:24 to go in the first half to tie the game at 20 a piece. Following a Knights foul, Tony Carr took the lead again for the Lions with 9:52 to go with two foul shots.
Josh Reaves scored again to give the Lions the lead 24-23 with 9:09 to go in the half and then forced a jump ball on an athletic defensive play right after. Once again, Reaves was able to score on a put-back off of Satchel Pierce’s missed foul shot increasing the lead to 26-23 with 7:51 to go.
With 4:29 to go in the half, Josh Reaves continued to be everywhere on the court chasing down offensive rebounds and deflecting passes. He led all scorers to that point with 12 points as the Lions increased their lead over the Knights 32-25.
Tony Carr made a buzzer-beating, falling shot off an in-bound steal to send the Nittany Lions into halftime with a 45-29 lead over Fairleigh Dickinson. Carr led all scorers in the first half with 15 points, 9 of which came from the foul line. The Nittany Lions went on a 19-4 run during the later parts of the half to take a lot of momentum. Josh Reaves’s overall athleticism was on display throughout the whole half, as he contributed 12 point, 6 rebounds, and countless hustle plays.
Penn State started the second half strong, scoring the first seven points of the half. A Mike Watkins block and fast-break dunk, Tony Carr three pointer, and Josh Reaves dunk gave a lot of energy to the team. After giving up a basket to the Knights, Josh Reaves dished a nasty, behind the back pass to Mike Watkins for a bucket and a foul increasing the lead to 54-31.
With 12:00 to go in the game, Penn State continued to play strong, leading 56-37. Coach Pat Chambers was able to get some minutes for his bench, especially Nazeer Bostick and Satchel Pierce. Satchel Pierce and Kaleb Bishop each got off-setting technical fouls, resulting in Bishop’s fifth foul of the game and ejection.
With 6:41 to go in the game, Penn State completely overmatched the Knights. After a couple of fast break dunks for Reaves, Watkins, and Stevens, the Lions were able to extend their lead to 70-45. Tony Carr continued to lead all scorers with 20 points and 7 assists.
Penn State finished off the Knights with a 81-57 victory. Carr finished with 20 points, Reaves had 17, and Watkins scored 15.
Player Of The Game
Josh Reaves | Junior | Guard
Reaves was all over the court in this game. He played with the confidence that any loose ball was his. He finished with 17 points, 9 rebounds, 4 assists, 4 steals, and 1 block. He had many plays that did not show up in the stat sheet.
Penn State begins the Legends Classic Wednesday night against Montana at the Bryce Jordan Center. Tip-off is scheduled for 7:00 p.m. and will be broadcasted on the Big Ten Network.