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Nov. 7, 2010
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa.; Nov. 7, 2010 - Penn State held the East Stroudsburg Warriors to 31 percent shooting and forced 19 turnovers to overcome a sluggish first half offensively on its way to a 66-52 victory Sunday in exhibition action at the Bryce Jordan Center.
The Lions shot 61 percent in the second half and scored 21 of their 66 points off turnovers to pull away in a game in which no team lead by more than six points until 11 minutes remained. Penn State committed 16 turnovers of its own in the game and hit 30 percent from the floor in the first half to trail by one at halftime.
Senior Talor Battle (Albany, N.Y.) led all scorers with 16 points and added three assists and four rebounds in 25 minutes of action before going to the bench for good with 8:29 to play and the Lions leading 48-43. Sophomore Tim Frazier (Houston, Texas) and redshirt freshman Billy Oliver (Chatham, N.J.), who went 2-4 from three, both helped spread the scoring load as each posted 10 points. Frazier went 4-6 from the field and also dished-out a team-high six assists. Freshman Taran Buie (Albany N.Y.), in his first action as a Nittany Lion, recorded a team-high tying seven rebounds and added nine points and three steals in 20 minutes off the bench. Senior Andrew Jones (Philadelphia, Pa.) also pulled down seven rebounds and added eight points for the Nittany Lions who had eight players log 15 minutes or more in the game and played 12 on the night.
East Stroudsburg, which went 24-6 last year in NCAA Division II, was led by 10 points from Terrance King and nine from Russell Graham.
"Offensively we were poor tonight and we had too many turnovers," Penn State coach Ed DeChellis said. "Turnovers are something we've struggled with in practice. We also tried to play everyone in the first half so that contributed some to the struggles offensively."
Senior Jeff Brooks (Louisville, Kent.) had a game high four blocks and was a spark for the Lions late in the game. Brooks scored six straight points and finished a 6-0 Lion run with an emphatic dunk on a feed from Frazier to give the Lions a nine-point lead, 52-43, with 7:43 remaining. The Warriors were able to close the gap to five before Penn State went on another run with eight straight points from underclassmen Frazier, Buie and Oliver to open up a 13-point lead, 60-47, with 3:58 to play.
Frazier's lay-up started the run. Buie followed with a steal and a lay-up of his own before Frazier buried a short jumper and Oliver got a put-back off an offensive board.
Penn State started the game off strong with two three-pointers from Battle to take an early 10-4 lead. The Nittany Lions got East Stroudsburg into foul trouble early reaching the bonus with 10:40 left to play in the first half but were unable to capitalize going 5-13 from the line in the first 20 minutes. East Stroudsburg rebounded after the slow start by pulling within one, 13-12, with 8:59 remaining after holding Penn State to eight straight possessions without a field goal.
Penn State build a 23-19 lead with 3:16 to play following a Buie steal and lay-up, but East Stroudsburg responded with a 7-0 run powered by solid defensive play to take a 26-23 lead. The Warriors went to the locker room leading 26-25 at the half.
Both teams struggled from the field in the first half as both went 9-of-30 from the field and logged 10 turnovers. Battle carried the load offensively scoring 12 of Penn State's 25 points in the first half, but posted just four of the Lions' 41 second half points as Penn State's offense began to mesh.
The Nittany Lions went on a 6-0 run to take a 36-31 lead with 13:50 remaining in the game. The run was marked by solid defense and a pair of rejections by Brooks.
After East Stroudsburg pulled the game back to even at 36, the Nittany Lions went on another run, scoring eight straight, including a pair of baseline threes from Oliver, to put the lead at 44-36 with 11:12 on the clock.
Senior forward David Jackson (Farrell, Pa.) left the game with 14:31 to play and did not return. He was diagnosed with a minor right quad strain and is expected to be available for the Nittany Lions season opener.
Penn State will open the regular season at home against Lehigh at 7:30 p.m. on Fri., Nov. 12. "Opening Night" at the Bryce Jordan Center will have free admission for all Penn State freshmen and a $5 concession stand voucher for all student season ticket holder. Penn State opens the season with four straight games at the BJC including a Nov. 16 matchup against St. Joseph's.
Nittany Lion Basketball season tickets are available by calling 814-865-5555. Season tickets are $220 for adults, $190 for seniors for a 19-game home schedule and $59 for students. PNC Flex Books are also available again this year for $99. The Flex Book gives fans 12 vouchers, 10 that can be redeemed in any combination for Nittany Lion and Lady Lion Basketball tickets throughout the year and two extra vouchers for the Nittany Lions' Coaches Vs. Cancer game and the Lady Lions' Think Pink game. For all the latest information, notes, pictures and related links on Penn State basketball follow Assistant Athletic Communications Director Brian Siegrist on Twitter (@PSUSTRETCH) and check GoPSUsports.com. The Nittany Lions are also on Facebook at www.facebook.com/pennstatebasketball.