The Penn State Nittany Lions ended their home season on Sunday with a 71-66 to the Wisconsin Badgers. The Nittany Lions were attempting to carry over the emotion from Thursday’s upset victory over Ohio State by defeating another ranked opponent. However, their effort fell short in this one.
The result shouldn’t come as much of a surprise, as Wisconsin has dominated the series against the nittany Lions on the court.
After trailing by just four at halftime, Penn State fell behind by double-digits in the second half. However, the Nittany Lions showed fight and battled back to make it a game. However, they never got closer than two points.
It was business as usual for the Nittany Lions, with guard D.J. Newbill leading the way. One of the top scorers in the Big Ten, Newbill was once magnificent once again, pouring in 23 points against the Badgers. Senior point guard Tim Frazier, who’s shown signs of inconsistency lately, struggled again in this one, getting into early foul trouble and managing just 10 points.
Despite the outcome, Penn State has to be very encouraged by the play of its frontcourt. A problem area for much of the season, the Nittany Lions surprisingly controlled the paint against the Badgers outscoring them 44-18. Penn State also won the rebounding battle. Forwards Ross Travis and Brandon Taylor both had arguably their best performance of the season and made a big impact in the game. Travis finished with 10 points and eight rebounds. Taylor led the game with 10 rebounds and added nine points.
Penn State struggled from behind the arc in this one, making just one of 13 attempts from long range.
The victory for the Badgers was their seventh in a row, giving them good momentum for the post season. Wisconsin played a three-guard set and god a solid effort from all three players. Josh Gasser led the team with 15 points. Ben Brust scored 14 while Traevon Jackson added 13 points. Sam Dekker had eight rebounds for the visitors.
Penn State has now has two games remaining in the regular season before heading to the Big Ten Tournament. The Nittany Lions will be on the court on Thursday, March 6 at Northwestern.
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