Seniors Lead Upset of #18 Michigan State
The theme of family has been a constant for this Nittany Lion team all season and it came to fruition on Saturday afternoon as the senior members of the squad finally arrived on the same page to lead Penn State to an upset on eighteenth-ranked Michigan State, 66-62.
Each of the four seniors scored in double digits, but the story of the game might have been the strong showing by 6-10 center Andrew Jones who tied a career-high with 16 points. He had a strong first half against Purdue on Wednesday, but was plagued with foul trouble in the second half. He continued his strong play which will be needed as the Nittany Lions still have three ranked opponents to play in their next three games.
Jeff Brooks led all Penn State scorers with 17 points and fellow seniors Talor Battle and David Jackson had 13 and 11 points, respectively.
In a game that was back-and-forth for the first 38 minutes, Jones’ tip-in with 1:58 left put the Lions up 62-61. After trading free throws, a jumper by Talor Battle with 18 seconds left and a free throw by sophomore point guard Tim Frazier sealed it and the student section, as meager as it was in the dwindling days of winter break, stormed the court, bringing back memories of the 2008 upset over the #7 Spartans.
Durrell Summers led all scorers with 21 points and Kalin Lucas also netted 14 for the Spartans.
The Nittany Lions, who are now 9-6 overall and .500 in the Big Ten (2-2), take on #20 Illinois at the Bryce Jordan Center on Tuesday night at 9:00 p.m. and all student ticket proceeds with benefit THON.
Cleaning the Glass:
- Brooks added 12 rebounds to his stat line for his second straight double-double.
- Jermaine Marshall had another strong showing off the bench, scoring 8 points in 19 minutes.
- Andrew Jones’ point performance matched that of his performance against Notre Dame in the 2009 NIT semifinals.
- Penn State now has three wins over Michigan State in their last seven meetings.