Men's Hoops Game Blog - FINAL: #7 Indiana 72, Penn State 49

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BLOOMINGTON, Ind. - Welcome to live in-game coverage of the Nittany Lion basketball team.

Take a look back at Penn State's 72-49 setback to Indiana inside Assembly Hall on Wednesday night.


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Starting Lineups:
Penn State -
G - Marshall, G - Newbill, G - Colella, F - Taylor, F - Borovnjak
#7 Indiana - G - Ferrell, G - Hulls, G - Oladipo, F - Watford, F - Zeller

15:59 1st Half - Indiana 7, Penn State 4
Indiana stormed out of the gate with a trio of baskets, including two from point guard Yogi Ferrell, for a 7-0 lead in the opening two minutes, but the Nittany Lions hung tough and trimmed the Hoosier lead down to 7-4.  Marshall connected on a floater in the lane before Ross Travis knocked down a pair of foul shots.  Penn State has competed hard on the defensive end of the floor in a 2-3 zone to start the game.

11:50 1st Half - Indiana 15, Penn State 8
The Nittany Lions have competed on both ends of the floor, but Indiana's ball pressure has been the key in the opening 8:10 of the game.  The Lions are shooting just 3-for-11 from the floor, largely because of the way Indiana has contested every possession.  Nonetheless, the Lions trail by just seven mid-way through the half, and they have done a nice job keeping the Hoosiers out of rhythm on offense.

7:17 1st Half - Indiana 20, Penn State 10
The story remained the same leading up into the third media timeout of the first half.  Penn State has done a nice job contesting shots around the basket throughout the first half.  The defensive effort has been superb for the Nittany Lions, but they are just 4-for-17 from the floor.  Marshall highlighted the stretch from the last media timeout with a basket and a big block on Victor Oladipo as he skied for a dunk.

3:44 1st Half - Indiana 23, Penn State 14
Penn State's defensive effort on the high-powered Hoosiers has been superb in the first half.  Indiana is shooting just 30 percent from the field in the first half.  Back-to-back baskets from Jon Graham pulled the Lions within seven on the scoreboard, 21-14, before Cody Zeller connected on two free throws to make it a nine-point game.  Getting stops the way the Lions are is the recipe to be in a position to win, but Penn State needs shots to fall.

HALF - Indiana 33, Penn State 19
It is difficult to hold a potent offense down for a complete half, but the Nittany Lions were close to doing so.  Eight late points from sixth-man Will Sheehey sparked a 10-4 IU run to closeout the first half.  Nonetheless, Penn State held Indiana to 37 percent shooting from the field.  The Nittany Lions had several chances around the basket that did not fall when the game was within 10, but they settled for 8-for-27 from the floor in the first half.  Marshall led the way with nine points on 4-for-8 shooting.  Graham provided a nice spark off the bench with four points, and he competed well on defense.  The Hoosiers picked up some momentum late in the half, but credit the Nittany Lions for their defensive play in sold out Assembly Hall.  Indiana came into the game averaging 84.4 points per game (38.3 in the first half).

15:36 2nd Half - Indiana 46, Penn State 27
The Hoosiers came out of the locker room red-hot.  Ferrell and Hulls each knocked down a three before Oladipo converted on a transition layup.  The quick 8-0 spurt put Indiana up 41-19 before the Lions called a timeout.  Newbill answered with two-straight baskets, but a third IU triple put Indian back up by 21 (44-23).  Sasa Borovnjak added two free throws and Marshall connected on a jumper to trim the Hoosier lead down to 17, but Oladipo's second bask of the half pushed the margin back up to 19.  The Nittany Lions have exchanged blows with Indiana after the first surge from the Hoosiers to open the half.

11:29 2nd Half - Indiana 55, Penn State 34
Indiana has opened the second half shooting 70 percent.  The Nittany Lions have warmed up this half, as well, shooting 45 percent.  Penn State is still fighting despite being down 55-34.  Penn State needs to start finding some success beyond the arc to trim the deficit down.  The Lions are just 1-for-11 from three-point range.

7:41 2nd Half - Indiana 60, Penn State 37
Indiana's red-hot start to the half pushed the scoring margin to more than 20, but it has remained relatively static since then because the Lions have battled on every possession.  The Hoosiers are still shooting north of 70 percent from the field and 6-for-6 from beyond the arc in the second half.  Coach Chambers told the team in the huddle to win the two remaining four-minute games.

FINAL - Indiana 72, Penn State 49
Although the final box score won't show it, the Nittany Lions competed on every single possession from start to finish on Wednesday night in Assembly Hall.  Newbill paced Penn State with 18 points and seven rebounds.  Marshall added 12 tallies and six rebounds in the setback. Indiana's quick start in the second half put the game out of reach, but the Nittany Lions showed no signs of letting up.  Coach Chambers said coming into the game that he wanted to see his team compete for 40 minutes, and the Lions did that on Wednesday night.  It is very difficult to beat a potent team like Indiana when you shoot 33 percent from the field and 2-for-15 from 3-point range.  The Hoosiers were led by 19 points from Oladipo and 15 from Ferrell.  The two big threes from Sheehey just before halftime were huge shots for the Hoosiers to gain some momentum. 

Penn State will build on Wednesday's game.  Chambers was very proud of the way his team competed from start to finish in a hostile environment.  By no means was it a perfect night for the Nittany Lions, but they played hard and will take that effort into Saturday's clash with Ohio State in the Bryce Jordan Center.

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Keys to the Game:
- Make shots early - Getting off to a quick start in a hostile environment is critical.
- Defend for 40 minutes - Against a team with Indiana's firepower, playing consistent, competitive defense is essential for the Lions to give themselves a chance to score a victory.
- Keep the tempo manageable - Indiana wants to push the ball every chance it gets.  Offensive rebounding and second-chance points can limit IU's ability to run in transition.
- Play with confidence - Wednesday is another opportunity for the Lions to battle toe-to-toe with an elite team in the Big Ten.  Embrace the chance to compete with one of the nation's best and play with confidence on both ends of the floor.

Final Pregame Word
Looking to snap a six-game winning streak to open conference play, the Nittany Lions meet a talented Indiana squad looking to stay on track to contend for a Big Ten title.  Head coach Patrick Chambers said earlier in the week that he wants to see his team compete at the same high level for 40 minutes.  Penn State held the Hoosiers to just 30 points in the second half of the first meeting between the two teams, but playing inside Assembly Hall will present a different challenge.  Making shots early and weathering the crowd is essential for the Nittany Lions to put themselves in a position to win.  Nonetheless, getting stops on the defensive end of the floor is paramount for Penn State to have a chance to compete with the seventh-ranked Hoosiers playing in front of a raucous home crowd.



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

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