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Penn State Basketball

Penn State Basketball’s Win Streak Ends at Northwestern

Image by Penn State Athletics: Mike Rhoades

Penn State basketball’s offense averaged more than 86 points per game in its wins over Indiana and Iowa. 

But it scored just 63 in a 68-63 loss at Northwestern Sunday afternoon.

The game was tight for most of the first half, with Penn State leading 25-24 at the first media timeout. Northwestern retook the lead. Then, with 1:17 left in the half, Northwestern’s best player, Boo Buie, who came in averaging 19 PPG, converted a three-point play to make it 29-25. A pair of Ace Baldwin free throws on the next possession made it 29-27. Qudus Wahab rejected Northwestern’s Brooks Barnhizer on the last play of the first half, and Penn State went into the break down two. Baldwin ended the day with 17 points. Baldwin’s old VCU teammate, Nick Kern, ended with a team-best 18 and Zach Hicks had 14. 

Baldwin led Penn State (12-12, 6-7 Big Ten) in the first half with eight points and four assists. Baldwin also did a great job defending Buie, who ended the half 1-for-6 from the field and with just three points. Buie ended with 15 points. Penn State’s 3-point shooting, which had been a big asset in its wins at Indiana last Saturday (12-for-22) at at home against Iowa this past Thursday (12-for-23), got off to a slow start, going just two for eight in the first half. It ended the day 6-for-19.

In the second half, the game stayed back and forth with Northwestern leading 40-39 at the first media timeout. Then, Northwestern (17-7, 5-5 Big Ten), scored nine of the next 10 points to lead 48-40 at the next media timeout. Penn State went into the last media timeout down by one, but Ryan Landborg– who ended with 14– hit a wide-open 3 to make it a two-possession game. 

With less than three to play, a dunk by Northwestern’s Matthew Nicholson (11 points, eight rebounds) made it 59-53 and all but sealed it. 

Penn State looks to bounce back Wednesday night at home against Michigan State. Tipoff is scheduled for 6:30.

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