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Nittany Lions top Beavers in Florida

NICEVILLE, Fla. — The Penn State men’s basketball (4-2, 0-0 Big Ten) team closed out Thanksgiving week with a strong defensive performance in a 60-45 win over Oregon State (1-6, 0-0 Pac-12) in the final game of the 2021 Emerald Coast Classic Saturday afternoon at Raider Arena.

The Penn State defensive effort was impressive as the Nittany Lions held the Beavers to a 31.4 percent (16-51) clip from the field and 23.5 percent (4-17) mark from 3-point range. The Nittany Lions kept Oregon State to 45 points, marking the first time Penn State held an opponent to 45 or less points since Jan. 17, 2018 when Penn State kept Rutgers to 43 points.

Senior guard Jalen Pickett led the Nittany Lions in scoring for the second consecutive game with a game-high 14 points. Pickett also added four rebounds and tied his season best with seven assists.

Junior Seth Lundy and senior Myles Dread also contributed double-digit points with a respective 13 and 12. Dread hit four shots from beyond the arc, a season best, while Lundy pulled down seven boards on the defensive end.

HOW IT HAPPENED

It was a slow offensive start for both teams in the first half as the Beavers would hold a slight 5-2 advantage at the under-16 media timeout.

The Nittany Lions took their first lead of the game right after the under-12 timeout thanks to a 3-pointer by Dallion Johnson to make it 11-9.

Penn State went on a 14-1 run to close out the first half and did not allow an Oregon State field goal in the final five minutes to head to the locker room with a 29-17 advantage.

The Nittany Lions hit a quick five points to open the second half and forced Oregon State to call a timeout just two minutes in.

A Dread 3-pointer would add to the 8-0 run over a nearly four-minute span to increase the lead to 18 points, 37-19.

Penn State’s offense continued to heat up as its defense held strong, going on a 13-2 run in four and a half minutes leading up to the under-8 media timeout. The run was capped by a long 3-pointer by Pickett for their largest advantage of 26 points, 52-26.

Oregon State then went on a 13-2 run of its own to get back within 15, 54-39, at the under-4 media timeout.

Despite another late run by the Beavers, the Nittany Lions used a late three from Dread and a dunk by Lundy to keep a 15-point advantage into the 60-45 victory.

GAME NOTES

The Penn State defense held Oregon State to just 17 points on 7-28 shooting (25.0 percent) in the first half, the fewest points allowed in a half this season.

Penn State allowed Oregon State to score 45 total points, the lowest for an opponent since allowing 43 against Rutgers in the 2017-18 season (1/27/18).

The Nittany Lions turned the ball over just seven times, a season low.

All four of the Nittany Lions’ wins this season have come by double digits.

Senior Jalen Pickett had his third-straight game with double-digit points. Pickett also had his second consecutive game with four 3-pointers.

Sophomore Dallion Johnson recorded a career-high nine points on a personal best three 3-pointers, surpassing previous bests of three points on one 3-pointer.

Junior Seth Lundy registered double-digit points for the fifth time this season and 22nd time in his career.

Senior Myles Dread hit a season-high four 3-pointers for a season-best 12 points and his second consecutive game in double digits.

Three Nittany Lions recorded double-digit points in the game for the fifth time this season.

UP NEXT

Penn State returns to Happy Valley and the Bryce Jordan Center for a big midweek matchup against Miami (Fla.) in the 2021 Big Ten/ACC Challenge. The Wednesday, Dec. 1 game is set for a 9:15 p.m. ET tip on ESPNU.

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