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Penn State Hoops Loses Overtime Heartbreaker To Indiana 87-85

Penn State men’s basketball (3-4, 0-3) lost an overtime thriller against Indiana (6-4, 1-2) 87-85 Wednesday night. Myreon Jones led the way with 20 points while Sam Sessoms added 17 points off of the bench.

The Nittany Lions didn’t have a lead until a little under 30 seconds left in the second half and had multiple chances to win the game. However, the Hoosiers’ clutch shooting and defense ultimately gave them the advantage and the victory.

How It Happened

Penn State got into foul trouble early on, with two fouls called on the team in the first minute of the game. The Nittany Lions then proceeded to turn the ball over twice and miss their fist thee shots of the game. Myreon Jones got the scoring started with a three-point basket.

Indiana got consecutive baskets in the paint, but Trent Buttrick responded with a hard -ought layup. The problem was fouls. Indiana went to the free throw line three times in the first four minutes of the game.

The beginning of the first half consisted of ugly basketball on both sides. Penn State committed a lot of fouls and turnovers, but Indiana missed a fair amount of shots. Buttrick did have a really nice block that seemed to spark some energy in the Nittany Lions, as Myles Dread was able to score in the paint.

Jones knocked down another three, which was a much-needed basket. But Penn State picked up another foul, giving the Hoosiers another chance at free points. After a key stop on defense, Jones knocked down another three. Indiana was able to respond with a three of its own, however.

John Harrar was able to muscle his way into the paint, and it felt like the tide was starting to turn as Indiana couldn’t make baskets, but another turnover stopped that momentum.

The Hoosiers got a chance to knock down an open three, but Jones found his rhythm and knocked down a mid-range shot. Dread got a nice jumper on the following offensive possession, and then the Nittany Lions caused a turnover. They were not able to capitalize on that turnover, but on the next possession Dread hit a wide open three.

The Nittany Lions ended the first half as they began it, by picking up a foul. Luckily, the Hoosiers could not capitalize, and Penn State went into halftime trailing 38-33.

The second half got under way with a three by Seth Lundy. Indiana responded with a baseline layup. Penn State had an opportunity to cut into the lead, but they turned the ball over and allowed an Indiana basket.

Brockington crashed the boards again and was able to hit a layup and draw a foul. He made the free throw and then he led the Nittany Lions in getting a big stop on defense. Brockington was able to get another midrange shot and Penn State was within one point.

The Hoosiers drew a foul and made the free throws, but Brockington tied the game with a wide open three. He was carrying the Nittany Lions on offense at the beginning of the second half. A two-handed slam gave Indiana the lead again, but Sessoms tied it up again with a layup.

The scoring went back and forth, but Indiana was able to go on a small run by attacking the paint. Harrar had a quick response, though, as he was able to draw a foul. He made one of his two free throws.

Jamari Wheeler and Lundy attacked the basket and scored on consecutive possessions. Suddenly, the Nittany Lions were closing in with seven minutes left to play.

Brockington knocked down a big three, but Indiana responded with two points of its own. Harrar was able to get to the free throw line and knocked down both free throws. The Hoosiers stayed with it, though, as they got to the free throw line on their next offensive possession.

The Nittany Lions just could not defend the paint. The Hoosiers ended up bullying them down below, and all they had to do was run into the paint. Despite this poor defense, the Nittany Lions were still very much alive.

Harrar continued to push his way in the paint, and Jones hit a big time three to cut the lead to four. Sessoms knocked down another three and the lead was cut down to one.

Indiana hit two free throws which extended their lead back to three, but Sessoms was able drive and get a score to cut that lead back down to one. Sessoms then hit a big time shot and Penn State took the lead.

Indiana drew a foul though, and it only made one of those two free throws. Penn State could not hit a last second shot, and the game went into overtime tied at 80.

Wheeler got the scoring stared quick, but Indiana evened the score. Jones was able to get to the free throw line but only was able to make one of two. Indiana had opportunities to take the lead, and Penn State had chances to. extend it, but both teams kept missing. The Hoosiers were able to find the basket with a minute left and they took the lead.

Jones was able to drive into the paint and he drew a foul. He made both and the game was tied up again. The Hoosiers were able to come up with a big time play, and they took a two-point lead.

Penn State tried to go for the tying basket, but the shot got blocked and the Nittany Lions lost a really tough battle 87-85.

Takeaways

  • Aggressiveness is great, but Penn State needs to fix its fouling problem. It is so hard to win if the stars of the team are in foul trouble. If the Nittany Lions are going to have any success, they need to cut down on the reckless plays and be smarter with when to be aggressive.
  • Speaking of foul trouble, having multiple players on the bench with fouls could have led to different players being on the court, specifically the freshmen. However, it’s like a lot of those platers aren’t even on the team. Jim Ferry knows his players well, but give them a chance to play in a game setting! This was a great opportunity that was ultimately missed.
  • Myreon Jones is coming into his own. After a slow start to the season, he has come to life in the last two games. He had a career game against Illinois, and he played really well from behind the arc tonight. He will have to continue to play well to give the Nittany Lions any chance of getting a win in conference play.

What’s Next

The Nittany Lions return to Happy Valley to play No. 6 Wisconsin at noon on Sunday, January 3. The game will be broadcast on the Big Ten Network.

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About the Author

Owen Abbey

Owen Abbey is a junior from Annapolis, Maryland, majoring in Secondary Education and minoring in Social Justice in Education. When he is not writing for the blog, he enjoys rooting for the Baltimore Orioles and Ravens, supporting Penn State basketball and softball, dreaming of all of the ways he would win the tv show Survivor, and yes mom, actually doing schoolwork. If you would like to talk about sports or Survivor, the best way to reach out is on Twitter @theowenabbey. All other compliments may be sent to [email protected]

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