It was nearly a year ago that Tim Frazier last suited up for Penn State, injuring his achilles against Akron, and ultimately missing the remainder of the 2012-13 season. Today in the Bryce Jordan Center, he returned, and emphatically lead PSU to a 74-62 season opening win against Wagner. Frazier would finish with 25 points, 10 rebounds, and 4 assists, as well as just 1 turnover. Junior guard D.J. Newbiill, last season’s MVP in Frazier’s absence, was just as impressive putting up his own double-double, with 19 points and 11 rebounds.
Neither side shot the ball particularly well in the first half, but behind 5/13 shooting from three, the Lions opened up a 14 point lead, and lead by 12 at the break. The sloppy play continued into the second half, qw Wagner was able to close to just 3 early on, but PSU settled things down, and controlled the remainder of the game.
The new hand check rules in college basketball were very noticeable, as the teams shot a combined 70 free throws (43 for PSU, 27 for the Seahawks). Frazier shot 17 of those himself, appearing to have not lost a step and his ability to get to the basket despite the injury a year ago.
Two of Penn State’s freshmen made an appearance today, with both Graham Woodward and Geno Thorpe seeing action in the backcourt. Woodward hit a 3 on his first (and only) shot, and Thorpe would score 2 points on a driving layup. Graduate transfer Allen Roberts came off the bench, and added 4 points, and 7 rebounds. Sophomore forward Brandon Taylor looked much more comfortable both inside, and outside, hitting two big 3s in the first half, as well as a nice jumper in the lane on his way to 9 points and 7 boards.
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