STATE COLLEGE P.A.— As bad as Penn State men’s basketball was last Tuesday in Piscataway, New Jersey against Rutgers, the team was as good, if not better, in Sunday’s 83-61 win over Michigan in the Bryce Jordan Center.
As usual, Jalen Pickett was the star for Penn State (14-7, 5-5). Pickett posted a game-high 25 points, adding eight rebounds and seven assists. Seth Lundy added 20 for Penn State and Andrew Funk 17.
It was a much better showing than Tuesday’s 65-45 loss at Rutgers as well as Penn State’s first meeting with Michigan (11-10, 5-5). this season, a 79-69 loss in Ann Arbor Jan. 4.
Penn State went on an 18-2 run to end the first half and led 49-32 at the break. Pickett led Penn State with 17 points and Funk followed closely behind with 14. Pickett went 7-8 from the field and made two of his three 3-pointers. Funk went 5-7 from the field and 3-5 from 3. Michigan’s Jett Howard, son of Juwan, led all scorers with 18 points, going 7-for-8 from the field and 4-5 from beyond the arc.
The biggest surprise of the first have might have been Penn State’s Mikey Henn. Henn, a seventh-year senior, hadn’t scored a point through Penn State’s first nine Big Ten games. Starting at forward in palace of freshman Kebba Njie, Henn scored nine in the first half, including back-to-back 3s that added to Penn State’s 18-2 run. He ended with 10 for his second double-figure game of the season.
The big run carried over into the season half. Penn State scored the 11 of the half’s first 13 points. At one point, Penn State had outscored Michigan 44-16 over a stretch.
Penn State’s next game is at No. 1 Purdue Wednesday night.