Men's Hoops Game Blog - FINAL: La Salle 82, Penn State 57

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PHILADELPHIA, Pa. - Welcome to live in-game coverage of the Nittany Lion basketball team.

Take a look back at Penn State's 82-57 setback to La Salle in The Palestra on Wednesday night.



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Starting Lineups:
Penn State - G - Marshall, G - Newbill, F - Travis, F - Taylor, F - Graham
La Salle - G - Dyren, G - Mills, G - Galloway, F - Wright, C - Zack

14:03 1st Half - La Salle 14, Penn State 13
Both teams are off to a red-hot start shooting the basketball in what has been an up-tempo opening 5:57 of basketball in The Palestra.  Ross Travis has been superb, scoring eight points on 4-for-5 shooting to open the game.  Travis is scoring from all over the floor, including a step-back jumper from 19 feet that set the score at 14-13 heading into the first media timeout.  The Explorers are 4-for-8 from beyond the arc in the early minutes.

11:49 1st Half - La Salle 20, Penn State 18
Penn State is 8-for-12 to start the game from the floor and 1-for-1 from beyond the arc.  The frenetic pace on both ends of the floor has led to a high-scoring first half.  The Nittany Lions would like to see a bit slower tempo on the defensive end of the floor, but the red-hot offense has equalized the quick-firing La Salle offense.  Tyreek Duran, La Salle's leading scorer, has 10 tallies already to lead all scorers.

7:59 1st Half - La Salle 25, Penn State 23
Both teams are still shooting north of 50 percent with under eight minutes to play in the first half.  Penn State needs a strong finish to the half on the defensive end of the floor.  The Nittany Lions are moving the ball well on offense, which is leading to good shots.  However, La Salle is finding easy looks on offense.

3:51 1st Half - La Salle 36, Penn State 28
Thanks to a trio of 3-pointers, La Salle took its biggest lead of the night at 10.  The Explorers tallied a 13-3 scoring run before a pair of Sasa Borovnjak free throws trimmed the Penn State deficit down to eight.  Nonetheless, La Salle's 3-point shooting has been the big key in the first half.  As a team, the Explorers are 8-for-14 from beyond the arc in the first half.

Halftime - La Salle 38, Penn State 34
A very entertaining first half drew to a close with two-straight baskets from Borovnjak and a big dive from Jermaine Marshall, which thwarted La Salle's last offensive possession.  Marshall played a superb half, finishing with 13 points on 4-for-6 shooting.  As a team, the Lions shot 57 percent from the field (13-for-23).  As we mentioned earlier, the big key for La Salle was the perimeter shooting.  The Explorers made eight 3-pointers in the opening half (8-for-17).  Duren tallied 15 points to lead La Salle in scoring.  The Nittany Lions improved defensively late, holding the Explorers without a basket for more than four minutes late before a driving floater from Duren.  The Nittany Lions committed just six turnovers in a fast-paced half, which is a very good number for a team still learning the ropes of the point guard position.  Penn State should feel good about the first half, but the Lions need to guard the perimeter better to walk out of the gym with a victory later tonight.


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15:33 2nd Half - La Salle 43, Penn State 40
Marshall picked up right where he left off to start the second half with a runner in the lane, but La Salle answered with its ninth 3-pointer of the evening and a basket from Jerrell Wright to put the Explorers up by seven (43-36).  The Nittany Lions answered with a step-back jumper from Travis, who has 12 points on 6-for-8 shooting.  Following a defensive stop, Newbill cut the lead to just three with a hard dribble drive into the lane.  The Philly native will be at the foul line looking to make it a two-point game after the media timeout.

11:49 2nd Half - La Salle 50, Penn State 43
The Nittany Lions got as close as two (43-41), but La Salle answered with four-straight tallies to make it a six-point game.  The margin is currently seven at the second media timeout of the half, despite Penn State still shooting 51 percent from the game.  The difference has been at the 3-point line, with 30 of La Salle's 50 points coming from beyond the arc.  Nevertheless, the Lions are within striking distance if they can get a couple stops on the defensive end of the floor.

7:52 2nd Half - La Salle 63, Penn State 46
Since it was 43-41 at the 15:33 mark, La Salle has mounted a furious charge to build its largest lead of the night.  Nine-straight points from Duren triggered the 20-5 scoring spurt.  Duren has been superb all night, leading all scorers with 27 points on 9-for-13 shooting and 4-for-7 beyond on the arc.  Penn State needs stops on defense to get back into the ballgame.

3:56 2nd Half - La Salle 70, Penn State 51
The Nittany Lions have cooled off on the offensive end of the floor in the second half.  Penn State is shooting 7-for-21 from the field this half.  We have talked about it all night, but the big difference in the game has been 3-point shooting.  La Salle has 39 points beyond the arc, compared to just nine from the Nittany Lions.

FINAL: La Salle 82, Penn State 57
The Nittany Lions started fast on the offensive end of the floor, but cooled off late in Wednesday's clash inside The Palestra.  Penn State shot 57 percent from the field in the first half, but trailed 38-34 at the break.  La Salle killed the Nittany Lions at the 3-point arc throughout the night.  The Explorers shot 16-for-29 from 3-point range for 48 tallies of their 82 total points.  It's tough to beat anyone who shoots north of 50 percent from beyond the arc on 28 attempts.  The Nittany Lions looked very good for much of the first half on offense, but the perimeter shooting was just too much to overcome.  Duren led all scorers with 31 points, including four 3-pointers.  Marshall led three Nittany Lions in double figures with 19 points.  Newbill and Travis each score 12 points in the setback.  Penn State will look to build on its strong first half on Saturday when it returns to the BJC to meet Army.


Follow GoPSUsports.com's Tony Mancuso on Twitter @GoPSUTony

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