Lions Down Quakers, 58-47

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Redshirt sophomore Jon Graham posted three blocks against the Quakers.

Redshirt sophomore Jon Graham posted three blocks against the Quakers.

Dec. 1, 2012

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UNIVERSITY PARK, PA.; DEC. 1, 2012 - Three Nittany Lions posted double-digit scoring as the Penn State men's basketball team improved to 4-3 on the year with a 58-47 victory over Penn (2-6) on Saturday at the Bryce Jordan Center.

Redshirt junior Jermaine Marshall (Etters, Pa.) led the Nittany Lions in scoring for the third time on the year with 18 points, while redshirt sophomore D.J. Newbill (Philadelphia, Pa.) posted 13 points, five assists and five rebounds and freshman Brandon Taylor (Tabernacle, N.J.) added 11 points and six boards. Redshirt sophomore Jon Graham (Baltimore, Md.) tied his career-high with three blocks while providing strong defense on Quaker leading scorer Fran Dougherty and sophomore Ross Travis (Chaska, Minn.) led Penn State in rebounding for the fifth time this season with eight boards.

"He played great," Penn State coach Patrick Chambers said of Marshall. "I think he took great shots. He got his layups, his floaters and mixed it up, which is great. He needs to mix up his game and that's what he did today. I am happy for him. Out of anyone on the team, I am all over him. I have a vision of who he should become, and he is slowly started to head that way."

The Nittany Lions shot 43 percent (18-of-42) for the game and went 17-for-23 (.739) at the foul line. Penn State outscored Penn 26-16 in the paint, 14-9 off turnovers and 13-3 in second chance opportunities. After a rocky start against Penn's pressure, Penn State committed just 11 turnovers in the game.

"I think for the most part that Jermaine and D.J. did a good job," Penn State coach Patrick Chambers said. "Those guards on Penn are very quick and tough. Overall, I thought they handled it very well. Eleven turnovers for us, and we were pressed the whole game...definitely a step in the right direction taking care of the basketball."

After a slow start with the teams putting up a combined 11 points in just under six minutes, Penn grabbed an early 9-6 lead after back-to-back baskets. Penn State answered back with eight straight points, including 2-for-2 performances from both Taylor and Marshall. Taylor capped off the run with a three-pointer to give Penn State a 14-9 lead at the 10:39 mark.

The teams traded baskets with the Nittany Lions maintaining a two-point edge, 18-16. Penn's Darien Nelson-Henry fouled Marshall who hit two at the foul line sparking a 9-0 Penn State run to move Penn State's lead into double-digits, 27-17, with 3:12 remaining in the half. Taylor and Marshall each sank a three-pointer during the run.

Patrick Lucas-Perry ended Penn State's run with a trey, but Henry Brooks fouled Newbill who hit 2-of-2 from the free throw line to keep Penn State on top by nine, 29-20. The Quakers hit one final basket with just over two minutes to play in the half to come within seven, 29-22. Marshall answered with a jumper to give the Nittany Lions a nine-point lead, 31-22, heading into halftime.

The Nittany Lions shot 47 percent (8-of-17), including going 5-for-7 (.714) from beyond the arc, in the half and outscored the Quakers 9-0 on second chances for one of the Lions' best offensive halves of the season.

Newbill opened the second half with a dunk pushing Penn State's lead back into double-digits, 33-22. After Penn took the ball back down the floor, Newbill forced a Quaker turnover and slammed another dunk for the Lions' largest lead of the game, a 13-point Penn State margin, 35-22, with 16:42 remaining in the game.

Penn fought back to within six, 35-29, with a 7-0 run, which took four minutes off the clock. Travis hit a jumper to increase the gap to eight, 37-29, but a dunk from Tony Hicks had Penn trailing by only six, 37-31. Layups from senior Nick Colella (New Castle, Pa.), Newbill and Marshall pushed Penn State's lead to nine, 43-34, but Penn did not give up.

Two missed buckets and two fouls helped the Quakers move to within four, 43-39, as they went 3-for-3 at the line and also scored two on a fast break layup. Marshall scored a layup and assisted on two straight baskets from Graham that had Penn State leading, 49-39, with five minutes to play.

Two consecutive Penn baskets and a free throw cut the gap to five, 49-44, with 3:14 on the clock. However, the Quakers began to foul the Lions. Travis went 1-for-2 at the line and Marshall maded both shots for a 52-44 lead. After a block by Graham, Marshall forced a turnover and drew a flagrant foul from Jamal Lewis, who was ejected from the game. Marshall sank two shots at the line for a 54-44 advantage. The Lions retained possession and Newbill followed with a jumper as Penn State took a comfortable 12-point lead, 56-44, with just under 90 seconds remaining.

The Quakers sank one final trifecta with 40 seconds to go, but it was too little too late. Travis put up two final free throws producing the final score of 58-47.

Penn State shot 40 percent (10-of- 25) in the second half and made 7-of-9 free throws (.778).

Penn State hits to the road to take on La Salle on Wednesday, Dec. 5 at 9 p.m. at the Palestra. That game can be seen live on the NBC Sports Network. The Nittany Lions then return home for four straight games beginning with Army on Dec. 8. Penn State takes on Delaware State on Dec. 15, New Hampshire on Dec. 23 and Duquesne on Dec. 29.

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-

 

 

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