Penn State Dominates No.17 Maryland at Home
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - Lamar Stevens led all scorers with 24 points, Myles Dread added 17 and the team forced 17 turnovers as the Nittany Lions (12-16, 5-12) dominated the No.17 Maryland Terrapins (21-8, 12-6) 78-61 on Wednesday night at the Bryce Jordan Center.
It’s the third straight game that Stevens has scored at least 20 points. Stevens’ streak coincides with Penn State’s winning streak, as the Nittany Lions have now come out victorious in their last three contests, as well as five of their last seven.
For Stevens, the emphasis on offense was to take smart shots, and his 9-17 night from the field proves his point.
“I pick and choose my spots,” Stevens said. “I just work to get good shots for myself and not force shots.”
The Nittany Lions started hot, leading 14-5 at the first media timeout while Maryland struggled to find its footing. Dread led the charge with two early threes to jump-start the offensive, and Maryland’s early turnovers plagued them.
The Terps kept it close for a while, but a 9-0 run from Penn State pushed the lead to 27-11. It was more of the same for the rest of the half and the Nittany Lions took a 42-20 lead into the locker room. The 22-point lead was the biggest at halftime all season.
The Nittany Lions kept the Terrapins at arm’s length throughout the second half, leading by as many as 28 points. Maryland went on a run to cut the Penn State lead to 16, but they weren’t able to pull any closer than that in the end.
“We’ve started poorly a lot, and I thought we’d respond,” Maryland head coach Mark Turgeon said. “There was no fight in us. That was the disappointing part.”
Penn State was able to limit Maryland big man, Bruno Fernando, holding the sophomore to only nine points and eight rebounds on the night after Fernando torched the Nittany Lions in the two teams’ first meeting back in December.
“I thought Mike [Watkins] and John [Harrar] played really well against Illinois, and I thought they did a really good job on Fernando,” Penn State head coach Patrick Chambers said.
In addition to his efforts on defense, Harrar hit a new career high in points with nine on the night.
Though Josh Reaves and Jamari Wheeler combined to score only six points, their impact was felt on the defensive side of the ball, doing well to pressure Anthony Cowan and Eric Ayala and forcing those 17 Maryland turnovers.
“[Jamari] doesn’t need the headlines, he doesn’t need to score 20. He just wants to go out there and win,” Chambers said.
The Nittany Lions will look to make it four straight victories on Saturday as they head to Madison to take on the No.19 Wisconsin Badgers. Wisconsin is fresh off a double-overtime loss to Indiana on Tuesday night. Wisconsin remains the only team in the Big Ten that Chambers has not beaten in his time at Penn State.
Tom Shively is a senior majoring in broadcast journalism. To contact him, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
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