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MBB Comeback Falls Short Against Wisconsin

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December 4, 2017

Final Stats |  Quotes |  Photo Gallery 1  |  Photo Gallery 2 


1st Half 2nd
Wisconsin 31 33 64
Penn State 25 38 63
Box Score  | Box Score (html)
Postgame Notes | Postgame Quotes
Video: Chambers | Shep Garner
Points: Mike Watkins (22)
Rebounds: Tony Carr (9)
  Assists: Josh Reaves (5)
  Blocks: Mike Watkins (7)
  Steals: Carr/Garner (2)
Field Goal Pct. 35.7 44.2
Field Goals 20-56 23-52
3-Point Field Goal Pct.
14.3 45.5
3-Point Field Goals 2-14 5-11
Free Throws 21-25 13-19
Rebounds 34 36
Assists 13 12
Turnovers 11 10
Steals 6 8
Blocks 13 4

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UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - The Penn State men's basketball team comeback fell short on Monday evening as Wisconsin held on to take the Nittany Lions' home opener, 64-63, in Big Ten action in the Bryce Jordan Center.

Penn State (7-3, 1-1) climbed out of a 17-point deficit in late in the second half, as two Shep Garner jumpers, separated by a five-second call against the Badgers, re-energized the Nittany Lions. A 14-3 run over two minutes pulled Penn State within six. And then three, then two. And then one as Shep Garner knocked in two free throws with just 43 seconds on the clock.

From there, the Nittany Lions were forced to foul, causing the score to yo-yo back up to a three-point lead for the Badgers.

The foul game continued through the waning moments, until the Nittany Lions grabbed the defensive rebound on a missed Wisconsin one-and-one, leaving Penn State down, 64-63, with 13 seconds left to play. With a chance to win the game, Penn State took a three with just two seconds remaining, but the shot careened off the rim, into a jumpball rebound situation.

Unfortunately, the possession belonged to the Badgers with just six tenths of a second on the clock, and Wisconsin was able to hold on for the win.

“I’m proud of my guys competing to the end,” said Nittany Lion basketball coach Patrick Chambers. “They put us in a position to be successful. I give Wisconsin credit because they jumped us early and some of their freshmen hit some big shots. We are going to learn from this game, and the good news is, we don’t play another Big Ten game until January, and we can clean this stuff up in the next three weeks.”

Mike Watkins (Philadelphia, Pa.) was the highlight of the evening for Penn State as the redshirt-sophomore forward finished with a career-best 22 points to lead all scorers. Watkins went 9-13 from the floor, adding four free throws while grabbing eight rebounds and swatting seven shots. He now has 123 total blocked shots for his career in

Tony Carr (Philadelphia, Pa.) neared a double-double as the guard scored 16 points, going a perfect 6-6 from the charity stripe while adding nine rebounds. Carr also had two steals and a block.

Garner (Chester, Pa.) added 13 points, 12 of which came in the second half. The total moves him into a tie for 16th on Penn State’s all-time scoring list with 1,289 points.

Josh Reaves (Fairfax, Va.) finished with an all-around complete performance as the junior guard continued to shine, especially on defense. Reaves swatted away a career-best four shots while adding a team-high five assists. His stat line included seven points and three rebounds

On the evening, Penn State recorded a season-best 13 blocks as a team. This also marked the first time Penn State surpassed 10 team blocks since March 7, 2016, against Nebraska. The Nittany Lions finished the game going 21-25 from the free throw line, while Wisconsin went just 13 of 19.

The Nittany Lions return to action in the Bryce Jordan Center on Saturday, December 9, for a 4 p.m. match against George Washington in nonconference action. Visit for ticket information.

Keep up to date with the latest information from Coach Patrick Chambers and the Nittany Lions on Twitter by following @Coach_Chambers and @PennStateMBB, liking the team’s page on Facebook and following the team Instagram account at @PennStateMBB.




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