November 18, 2010

Because Penn State hoops is 3-0

Talor Battle
Well, if you count the glorified high school game (exhibition) against ESU as a real game, then Penn State men's basketball is 3-0. But without the expo game, the Nittany Lions are still 2-0 right now.

It wouldn't surprise anyone if Penn State lost one of its next two--lightweights Fairfield and CCSU. But they probably won't lose those games, and reach 4-0 before heading down to Oxford, Miss. for a game with Ole Miss. Now, they're not exactly Duke, but the Rebels are 2-0 so far, and play in the decent SEC.

Here's a quick wrap from the first two wins.

Penn State vs Lehigh - W, 70-56

Penn State shot 59 percent from the floor to beat the 2009-10 Patriot League champ.
The senior Nittany Lions took charge as forwards David Jackson and Jeff Brooks scored 21 of their 24 combined points in the second half and Talor Battle led all scorers with 21 points while turning in a stellar defensive effort on 2010 Patriot League Player of the Year C.J. McCollum. Battle added six rebounds to his 31st career 20-point game while helping hold McCollum to seven points on 3-of-11 shooting, well below his average of 19.1 ppg posted last season. Jackson logged 14 points, 13 in a strong second half, and five rebounds. Brooks posted 10 points, nine rebounds and a career-best five blocks, the most by a Nittany Lion since Jan Jagla in 2003. Sophomore Billy Oliver added 10 points in 29 minutes and senior Drew Jones had nine boards and four points on the night.
Penn State vs St. Joseph's - W, 66-57

The seniors are really stepping up this young season. Though it's so early, it's a nice trend going into the thicker part of the schedule.
It was a stellar night for senior Jeff Brooks who hit 7-of-11 from the floor for a career-high 18 points and added a career-high tying nine boards for the second straight game to lead Penn State to a 66-57 victory over intrastate rival Saint Joseph's Tuesday at the Bryce Jordan Center.

Penn State improved to 2-0 to start a season for the sixth-straight season despite hitting 36 percent from the floor and just 1-of-21 from three. The Nittany Lions relied on defense, rebounding and the foul stripe as they held St. Joseph's to just 4-of-21 from three and 34 percent shooting overall, won the rebounding battle 45-38 and made 25-of-34 at the foul line to outscore St. Joseph's by 10 at the line.

Talor Battle added 15 points, five rebounds and five assists on the night as he moved past Geary Claxton (2,459) into fourth place all-time at Penn State for combined totals of points, rebounds and assists with 2,471. Battle also moved past Ben Luber (418) for seventh on the all-time assists chart with 423. David Jackson chipped in 11 points and five boards for Penn State, which improved to 14-9 vs. St. Joe's having won eight of the last nine meetings.
Next up...

Penn State will continue a run of four-straight home games to begin the season on Friday when it takes on Metro-Atlantic favorite Fairfield in a 7:30 p.m. tip at the Jordan Center. The game will air live on the Big Ten Network.

LBU News...

I'm happy to announce that within a few days, we will have a new blogger on board, covering only Penn State basketball (both men's and women's). So worry not, for you won't have to suffer through my stumbling hoops ignorance much longer.

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