Lead by 25 points from Steven Kaspar, 61% shooting from the field, and an absurd 66.7% from three point range, Bucknell came away with their first win against Penn State since 1976. All told, 4 Bison scored in double figures. Penn State was lead by 18 from D.J. Newbill, but also got 17 each from Ross Travis and Brandon Taylor, with 13 more from Tim Frazier.
The game got off to a blistering start, much different than Saturday’s season opener, with PSU hitting 9 of their first 10 shots from the field, but an equally hot shooting Bucknell kept the game close throughout the first half, with PSU going to the break leading 41-36. Bucknell did not cool off during halftime, scoring the first 7 points of the half to take the lead. The teams would trade baskets, and the occasional defensive stop, until the Bison began to pull away midway through the half. PSU closed to with in 5 points late, but never any closer.
Pat Chambers will surely have plenty to deal with on the defensive end of the floor, although it often felt like anything Bucknell threw up was going in, regardless of the pressure PSU put on the Bison offense. Foul trouble also plagued PSU, losing both Taylor and Newbill to fouls late in the game, while also dealing with 4 fouls on Frazier.
While a loss to Bucknell is disappointing, it alone will not keep PSU from their NCAA tournament goal. It was just 3 seasons ago that PSU dropped a home date to Maine, one of the worst teams in Division 1, but still earned a 10 seed in the tournament.
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