Nittany Lions Fall to Ohio State, 65-51

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Sophomore Jon Graham led the team in boards with six.


Sophomore Jon Graham led the team in boards with six.

Jan. 26, 2013

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UNIVERSITY PARK, PA.; JAN. 26, 2013 - Penn State (8-12; 0-8 Big Ten) held Big Ten leading scorer Deshaun Thomas to 11 points, nearly 10 below his average, but could not make enough shots to overcome No. 14 Ohio State (15-4; 5-2 Big Ten) falling to the Buckeyes, 65-51, on the third annual Coaches vs. Cancer Band Together Day at the Bryce Jordan Center.

"I definitely thought our defense was pretty good," Penn State coach Patrick Chambers said. "We put a lot of pressure on our offense when you don't make shots. I thought our game plan was good. If you told me that we would hold Deshaun Thomas to 11 points, I'd say we would be in the game and maybe with a chance to win."

A season high crowd of 11,212 saw junior Jermaine Marshall (Etters, Pa.) post 16 points and sophomore D.J. Newbill (Philadelphia, Pa.) add 15 points and six assists while committing just one turnover in 39 minutes against one of the nation's top defenders in OSU's Aaron Craft. Senior Sasa Borovnjak (Belgrade, Serbia) contributed nine points, a career high in Big Ten play, and sophomore Jon Graham (Baltimore, Md.) led the team with six rebounds for a Penn State squad that committed a season-low four turnovers but shot just 36 percent from the floor and 13-of-22 (59%) from the foul line.

"I thought (D.J.) did great," Chambers said. "You know why? Because he is strong. Aaron is used to going against smaller, quick point guards. The physicality matched what Aaron usually brings. I think D.J. did a nice job as a point guard. Six assists and one turnover, that's good numbers for a 2-3 guard."

Penn State suffered an 11-minute drought without a field goal and converted 29 percent (7-of-24) of its shots in the first half, but remained within striking distance for the entire game by slowing the Buckeye attack, blocking seven shots, and holding Thomas to 4-of-13 shooting.

The Buckeyes were led by 16 points from Sam Thompson and 11 from Lenzelle Smith, Jr. and won the rebounding battle 39-25 while shooting a pedestrian 43 percent from the floor but going 19-of-23 (82%) at the foul line.

The Nittany Lions had a slim 5-4 lead to start the game after a layup by Borovnjak and a three-pointer from Marshall. Ohio State took control with a 7-2 run for an 11-7 lead at the 15:42 mark. However, layups from Newbill and Borovnjak knotted the score at 11-11 two minutes later.

Ohio State fired back with an 8-0 run lasting nearly five minutes for a 19-11 lead. Thomas fouled Borovnjak to end the run as Borovnjak hit 1-of-2 at the line. The Buckeyes followed with six straight points for a 13-point lead, 25-12. After two scoreless minutes, Marshall sank a trey with 2:10 remaining to move Penn State within 10, 25-15, and record the Lions' first field goal since the 13:34 mark.

After two points from Ohio State's Aaron Craft, Buckeye Sam Thompson fouled senior Nick Colella (New Castle, Pa.) on a three-point shot. Colella converted one of his three free throw attempts keeping Ohio State's lead in double-digits, 27-16. Two OSU free throws moved the Buckeyes up by 13, 29-16, with 59 seconds remaining in the half. Marshall sank a jumper before time ran out to bring the Lions within 11, 29-18, and record his 10th point in the half.

Ohio State's lead grew to 14, 32-18, early in the second half, but a layup by Newbill and a trifecta from freshman Brandon Taylor (Tabernacle, N.J.) narrowed the gap to nine, 32-23, by the 17:16 mark. Ohio State was unfazed and used a 6-2 run to move back ahead by 13, 38-25.

The Buckeye lead continued to grow after back-to-back layups and a free throw giving Ohio State a 43-27 advantage with 13:34 on the clock. Two trips by Newbill to the foul line, where he went 3-for-4, pulled Penn State within 13, 43-30, before a jumper from freshman Donovan Jack (Reading, Pa.) had the Lions trailing by 11, 43-32.

The Buckeyes maintained at least an 11-point lead as the clock dipped below 10 minutes. By the 7:00 minute mark Ohio State had a comfortable 51-36 lead after three points from Craft. The Buckeyes continued to push, moving ahead by 17 before Penn State fought back. OSU's Lenzelle Smith Jr. fouled Marshall, who went 2-for-2 at the line, before a trey from Colella and a bucket from Borovnjak had the Lions within 11 again, 56-45, with 4:20 to play.

Despite three points from Smith Jr. in two trips to the free throw line, a Newbill basket and two free throws by Marshall had Penn State trailing by only 10, 59-49, with 2:41 remaining in the game. Ohio State slowly ran out the clock with six points and holding the Lions to only two in the final minutes to produce the final score of 65-51.

The Nittany Lions hit the road on Thursday, Jan. 31 with a trip to Iowa. The Lions and Hawkeyes meet at 8 p.m. with the game airing live on ESPNU. Penn State returns to the Bryce Jordan Center on Feb. 5 for a 7 p.m. game with Purdue.

For all the latest information, notes, pictures and related links on Penn State basketball follow Associate Athletic Communications Director Brian Siegrist (@PSUSTRETCH) and the official Penn State men's basketball handle (@PennStateMBB) on Twitter and check GoPSUsports.com. The Nittany Lions are also on Facebook at www.facebook.com/pennstatebasketball.

-NITTANY LIONS-

GAME NOTES

• Ohio State continues to lead the series 32-13. Penn State is 7-12 when facing the Buckeyes at home.

• Penn State committed a season-low four turnovers. The previous season low was eight vs. Michigan State on Jan. 16, 2013.

• For the second straight game, Penn State held a top 15 team's leading scorer well below his season average this time holding Big Ten leading scorer Deshaun Thomas (20.5 ppg) to 11 points. The Lions previously held Indiana's Cody Zeller (17.2 ppg) to a career low two points.

• Junior Jermaine Marshall now has 37 double-digit scoring games in his career and16 this season after leading the team with 16 points. Marshall has led the Lions in scoring eight times this season and 10 times in his career.

• Sophomore D.J. Newbill reached his 30th double-digit scoring game of his career and 17th this season with 15 points. He committed just one turnover in 39 minutes of action against one of the nation's top defenders in Aaron Craft.

• Newbill posted a team-high six assists, one shy of his career-high. He has led the team in assists 16 times this season.

Sasa Borovnjak's nine points marked his most ever in a Big Ten game.

• Sophomore Jon Graham posted two blocks and a team high six rebounds. Graham now has a team-high 20 blocks this season, one more than is 2011-12 total of 19.

--NITTANY LIONS--

 

 

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