No. 15 Indiana Escapes Penn St., 78-65
BLOOMINGTON, Ind. (AP) _ Jeff Newton and Bracey Wright each scored 17 points and Tom Coverdale added 14 points as No. 15 Indiana pulled away in the second half for a 78-65 victory over Penn State on Wednesday.
The Hoosiers (11-2) won their third straight since snapping a two-game losing streak.
The loss ended the Nittany Lions’ five-game winning streak and extended their road losing streak to 16. Penn State (5-7) also has lost two games on neutral courts in that span.
Still, Indiana struggled on defense early, giving the Nittany Lions hope in the Big Ten opener for both teams.
Indiana closed the first half on a 6-2 burst to take a 35-32 lead, then used a 10-2 run early in the second half to take charge. When the spurt ended, with 11:34 left, Indiana led 57-45.
Penn State got within 57-48, but the Hoosiers followed with a 14-4 spurt to put the game away.
The Nittany Lions used a 10-1 run to take an 18-10 lead midway through the first half. Indiana countered with nine straight points and the teams traded leads six times the rest of the half.
Penn State was led by Brandon Watkins’ 21 points, three fewer than his career-high. Sharif Chambliss added 12.
Indiana has won 12 straight against the Nittany Lions and owns a 20-1 lead in the series. The Nittany Lions’ only win over the Hoosiers came Jan. 27, 1996. Penn State is now 0-11 at Assembly Hall.