Buttrick, Wheeler lead PSU to victory
UNIVERSITY PARK – Seniors Trent Buttrick, John Harrar and Jamari Wheeler combined for 41.6 percent of the Nittany Lions’ scoring on Penn State’s 84-65 win over Minnesota (13-13, 6-13) on Wednesday night. The Nittany Lions (9-13, 6-12) honored their five senior student-athletes prior to Wednesday Big Ten win.
Buttrick, Harrar and Wheeler were three of the five Nittany Lions to finish in double figures in the victory. Buttrick tied his career-high with 13 points, knocking down three triples and Harrar turned in the sixth double-double of his career (12 points, 11 rebounds) to pace the front court.
Myreon Jones led the Nittany Lions in scoring, finishing with 17 points including a key 3-pointer as the Gophers tried to claw back into the game in the final minutes.
Minnesota had cut the lead to 11 with 3:51 before a Harrar layup pushed the lead back to 13. Jones’ triple extended the lead to 16 and Buttrick threw down an empathic dunk to seal the win.
Penn State was extremely efficient in all aspects of Wednesday game, outrebounding Minnesota at a 48-33 clip and snagged 17 offensive rebounds. The Nittany Lions also dished out 19 assists and turned the ball over only seven times.
Marcus Carr of Minnesota finished as the game’s leading scorer with 22 points.
The Nittany Lions ended the first half on a furious run. Penn State hit its final nine shots of the stanza to end the half on a 16-2 run. This scoring outing sent the Nittany Lions into the half leading 46-28.
The 46 points in the first half was the highest scoring first half of the season for the Nittany Lions.
After a slow start offensively for both teams, Trent Buttrick hit a pair of triples to jump start the Nittany Lions shooting during a pair of scoring droughts.
With just over five minutes to play in the half, Minnesota cut the Penn State lead to 24-22. Over those final five minutes, Penn State would outscore Minnesota 22-6. The Nittany Lion defense limited Minnesota to two field goals over the final five minutes.
The offensive outburst to end the half was started and ended with Myles Dread. Dread’s layup began the streak of nine-straight makes. In the final seconds of the opening 20 minutes, Dread stripped Marcus Carr and drilled a triple to send the Nittany Lions into the locker room with an 18-point lead.
Penn completes its regular season on Sunday, March 7 against Maryland.