|Follow PSU Men's Basketball:||Follow @PennStateMBB|
Dec. 18, 2011
UNIVERSITY PARK, PA.; DEC. 18, 2011 - Penn State (7-5) used a 9-0 run to start the second half and a 22-2 burst midway through to cruise to a 72-43 victory over Mount St. Mary's (1-9) Sunday at the Bryce Jordan Center.
The win marked the seventh in the non-conference season for the Lions, equaling last year's mark. Penn State will close out its non-conference slate on Wednesday when it takes on Cornell in a 7:30 p.m. tip at the Jordan Center. That game will be televised live on the Big Ten Network.
Penn State hit 11 of its first 13 shots in the second half vs. a Mount St. Mary's team that lost by three at Maryland earlier in the month as the Lions extended a three-point halftime lead to as many as 31 with 3:41 to play. Penn State shot 67 percent to score 44 points in the half while holding The Mount to just 18 second-half points and 35 percent shooting.
"This is one of the toughest games of the year - after exams and before Christmas," Penn State coach Patrick Chambers said. "Cornell is going to be the same great challenge. Everybody is thinking about going home, what presents you need to buy, how you're going to get home, when you're going to get home, so I'm trying to keep them here and focused."
Tim Frazier (Houston, Texas) led Penn State with 15 points and eight assists, the 10th double-figure scoring game of the season for the player that ranks third in the Big Ten in scoring and first in assists. Frazier moved into 11th place on Penn State's career assist chart with 333 passing Tony Ward (331, 1985-88).
Cammeron Woodyard (Westminter, Md.) tied a career-high with 14 points on 6-of-10 shooting in just 20 minutes of action. Billy Oliver (Chatham, N.J.) posted career highs with 13 points, three blocks and two steals. They were joined in double-figures by Jermaine Marshall (Etters, Pa.) and Sasa Borovnjak (Belgrade, Serbia). Penn State had a season-high five players reach double-digits and shot 51 percent from the floor.
"They really stepped up and I think they earned it," Chambers said. "They worked hard even though they had exams. I saw guys coming in and getting extra shots up and it's nice to see. That's what we have to do. We have to continue on that path of earning the right to make shots, outworking teams, and I think we did that for the past week."
The Lion scored 28 points off 18 Mount St. Mary's turnovers, 11 in the second half, and won the rebounding battle 33-25. The Mount was led by 11 points from Raven Barber and shot 36 percent from the floor and 3-of-17 from three.
Oliver hit a three 13 seconds into the second period to get the Lions off and running. Frazier hit Borovnjak for a lay-up and then got one of his own off a steal and an assist from Matt Glover (Orange, Calif.) forcing a Mount St. Mary's timeout just 1:39 into the half. Chambers put the ball in Glover's hands at the point for most of the second half and allowed Frazier to play off the ball, which ignited the Penn State offense.
Borovnjak completed the 9-0 run with another lay-up, part of a 5-for-5 night from the field, to give Penn State a 37-25 lead.
The lead hung around 12 points for the next five minutes until a Frazier three-point play with 12:04 to go ignited a 22-2 Penn State run. Marshall got a steal, passed to Frazier who drove to the other end before feeding Woodyard at the top of the key for a three that completed a 12-0 Lion spurt and built a 23-point lead, 57-34, with 7:12 to go.
Jacolby Wells scored a lay-up to end the run and stop a five-minute scoreless drought for The Mount. Penn State reeled of 10 more unanswered points to ice the game away, getting lay-ups from Oliver and Woodyard and threes from freshman Trey Lewis (Garfield Heights, Ohio) and Marshall to take a 67-36 lead with 3:41 to play.
Both teams struggled shooting less than 40 percent in the first half as Penn State took a 28-25 lead to the locker room
The Mount took an early 4-0 lead before Chambers called a timeout to light a fire under the Lions. Penn State responded with an 8-0 run sparked by a Billy Oliver three. Penn State extended its run to 17-5 to build a 17-9 lead after Oliver made three at the foul line after being fouled on a three-point attempt.
Penn State had the opportunity to push the lead into double digits, but failed to score over the next four minutes as The Mount hung close. A nice pass from Marshall to Woodyard for a lay-up broke the Lion drought, but The Mount got a pair of easy baskets from Barber to cut the lead to four, 21-17.
After a fairly hot 5-of-10 start, Penn State finished the half hitting four of its final 16 and allowed The Mount to cut the lead to three. A long three from Julian Norfleet as the shot clock expired cut the lead to four, 24-20.
Following a pair of Tim Frazier free throws, Chad Holley hit a three and The Mount was within three, 26-23. Frazier got his first field goal of the half, after starting 0-of-5, with just over two minutes to go to make it 28-23. A pair of Barber free throws finished the scoring in the half and had The Mount within three going to the locker room.
All of Penn State's games can be heard live on the Penn State Sports Network throughout Pennsylvania with Steve Jones and Dick Jerardi calling the action. "The Penn State Basketball Show" featuring Nittany Lion coach Patrick Chambers and Steve Jones airs each Thursday live from Damon's Grill in State College. Fans are encouraged to attend the live broadcast or call in their questions for the coach at 1-800-52LIONS.
PNC Flex Books for Nittany Lion and Lady Lion basketball are 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 on Feb. 11 vs. Nebraska and the Lady Lions' Think Pink game on Feb. 26 vs. Minnesota.
Nittany Lion Basketball single-game tickets or group tickets can be purchased by calling 1-800-NITTANY, visiting GoPSUsports.com or through Ticketmaster. Single-game tickets are $18 for the lower bowl and $15 for upper level tickets for adults. Youth tickets (18 and under) are $7 for the lower bowl and $5 for upper level seating, while Penn State student tickets (University Park or branch campus) are $5. Penn State also offers special basketball group ticket rates for groups of 15 fans or more. Nittany Lion group rates are $10 for adults and $5 for youth.
For all the latest information, notes, pictures and related links on Penn State basketball follow Associate Athletic Communications Director Brian Siegrist on Twitter (@PSUSTRETCH) and check GoPSUsports.com. The Nittany Lions are also on Facebook at www.facebook.com/pennstatebasketball.
With eight assists on the day, Tim Frazier moved into 11th place on Penn State's career assist chart with 333 passing Tony Ward (331, 1985-88). He is 17 shy of entering the top 10. Frazier increased his Big Ten leading season assist total to 87, on pace to shatter the Penn State season record of 189 set by Talor Battle in 2009.
Junior Billy Oliver posted a career-high 13 points on 4-of-5 shooting for his second double-figure scoring game of his career. He had 12 points at St. Joseph's earlier this year. He also had a career-high three blocks and two steals.
Senior Cammeron Woodyard equaled his career high with 14 points on 6-of-10 shooting in just 20 minutes. He matched the 14 he scored in the season-opener vs. Hartford for his sixth double-figure scoring game of the year.
Penn State had a season-high five players score in double-digits.
Penn State shot 66.7 percent in the second half, its best shooting half of the season bettering the 60 percent the Lions hit in the first half in a win over Youngstown State.
Penn State posted its seventh non-conference win equaling its total in the pre-Big Ten season (7-4) from last year's NCAA Tournament team.
Penn State posted its fifth 70-point or better game of the season. The Lions had five such games in 34 games last year.