Game Grades: Penn State vs. Canisius
The Penn State Nittany Lions have won four of their last five games, including the first of two games in their Return to Rec series. Thursday night at Rec Hall, Penn State (6-3) defeated the Canisius Golden Griffins (3-5) 81-67 for their first Rec Hall win since 1996. Penn State never trailed during the game. The Nittany Lions were a bit sloppy with 21 turnovers, but were even with Canisius, each having 19 points off turnovers. Here are the game grades for Penn State’s victory over Canisius:
Penn State struggled from the outside, converting only three of 12 3-pointers. Shep Garner scored 11 points and added two assists along with zero turnovers. Penn Stat shot 56 percent from the field, but only 25 percent from behind the arc. The one area Penn State must improve is steals. Penn State gave up 12 steals and only got five in return.
The Nittany Lions outscored the Golden Griffins 50-28 inside the paint, which proved to be the major advantage for Penn State. Penn State’s top three forwards combined for 43 points, with Brandon Taylor tallying 18 points while Julian Moore posted 14 and Payton Banks added 11. The Nittany Lions also outrebounded the Golden Griffins 40-29 and tallied seven blocks in the victory.
Josh Reaves used his quickness and was able to beat the Golden Griffins to the basket. Reaves finished with eight of the Nittany Lion’s 32 bench points, scoring six of them on slam-dunks. Reaves finished with a team high seven assists. Penn State’s bench outscored Canisius’ bench 32-14.
Pat Chambers’ team recorded their first win at Rec Hall in nearly a decade, but led 40-25 at halftime and allowed the Golden Griffins to go on a 14-6 run to get back into it. But, they did hold on and never relinquished the lead throughout the entire game. The Golden Griffins pulled within nine two different times in the final ten minutes, but couldn’t get closer.
The Nittany Lions play Saturday against Louisiana-Monroe with tip-off set for 2 p.m. at Rec Hall.
Brandon Pelter is a freshman majoring in broadcast journalism and finance. To contact him, email firstname.lastname@example.org.