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Friday, Feb. 23
The Indiana Daily Student

sports men's basketball

Indiana men’s basketball falls to Penn State 61-58 on the road


Indiana men’s basketball fell to Penn State 61-58 Sunday afternoon at the Bryce Jordan Center in University Park, Pennsylvania. Penn State took a 10-point lead halfway through the second half, but Indiana responded with a 9-0 run to get back into the game.  

Senior guard Rob Phinisee and junior forward Trayce Jackson-Davis took 3-point attempts hoping to tie the game on Indiana’s last possession, but both came up short. Indiana is now 1-2 in the Big Ten this season and 10-3 overall.

The Nittany Lions dominated the Hoosiers on the boards with a 39-29 rebound advantage. Jackson-Davis led the Hoosiers in scoring with 20 points but only pulled down five rebounds, an effort head coach Mike Woodson wasn’t happy with after the loss.

“I look at Trayce’s 20, he only got five rebounds,” Woodson said. “That’s what I look at.”

Indiana gave up 11 offensive rebounds and 11 second-chance points and was outrebounded 21-14 in the second half. 

“It was a focus for us to rebound offensively and defensively,” senior forward Race Thompson said. “We couldn’t keep them off the boards like we wanted to and that cost us a little bit. I think we just gotta be better in that area.”

Despite the loss, Jackson-Davis moved past Quinn Buckner to 39th on Indiana’s all-time scoring list with 1,200 points. He finished with three assists, two blocks and a steal in the loss as well, and he’s blocked at least two shots in 12 of the team’s 13 games this season. 

Most of Penn State’s offense came from the 3-point line as it shot 11-22 from beyond the arc compared to 4-17 from Indiana. It scored 54% of its points on 3-pointers and shot 10-29 on 2-point attempts.

“I’m looking at how we gave up 3’s tonight,” Woodson said. “This is the first time a team has gotten away from us in shooting the 3-ball.”

The Hoosiers held the Nittany Lions to 61 points thanks to their defense inside the paint, but Woodson was disappointed in the team’s pick-and-roll coverage and that it gave up so many points from long range. 

Jackson-Davis was Indiana’s only double-digit scorer, but senior guard Xavier Johnson, Phinisee and Thompson each scored 9 points. Thompson led the team with 10 rebounds and Johnson led with four assists. 

“I think our defense was good enough to win,” Thompson said. “We need to just keep getting better on offense.” 

Senior guard Parker Stewart reentered the starting lineup after sitting the entire first half of the team’s last matchup with Northern Kentucky University, but he only scored 2 points on 1-4 shooting in 32 minutes. Senior forward Miller Kopp was quiet as well and scored just 5 points on 2-5 shooting. 

The Nittany Lions forced the Hoosiers to do most of their damage in the half court, and they only scored 9 fast-break points in the game. Jackson-Davis said Woodson emphasized pushing the ball and getting transition buckets, but they weren’t able to.  

Sophomore guard Jordan Geronimo scored 4 points, which marked Indiana’s only bench points that didn’t come from Phinisee. Phinisee was the only Hoosier to play more than two minutes off the bench in the second half for Indiana.

Indiana fell to 0-3 on the road this season as Penn State improved to 6-5 with its first win in conference play. Indiana will look to rebound against No. 13 Ohio State at 7 p.m. Thursday in Bloomington. 

“We gotta go home and beat Ohio State,” Woodson said. “They’re the next on our list and we’ve been pretty good in our building.”

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