Sam Sessoms Explodes for Career-High 26 Points in Win over St. Francis Brooklyn

Story posted November 19, 2021 in Sports, CommRadio by Trevor Grady

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Sam Sessoms notched his career high as a Nittany Lion Thursday night in Penn State’s 74-59 win over St. Francis Brooklyn. The senior guard scored all 16 of his first-half points in the last 8:33 of the opening half, and tallied 16 of the Nittany Lions’ last 21 points of the first  half.

Sessoms clearly took advantage of the way the defense was guarding him and seemed to be the most prepared player on the floor all night.

“We knew they were an aggressive team on defense trying to deny the passing lanes,” Sessoms said. “They can’t be good at everything so if they deny the passing lanes that means the driving lanes will be there and if I beat my man I just knew I would have an open layup.”

Sessoms finished the game shooting an extremely efficient 10-for-13 from the field which helped lead the Nittany Lions to a 53% shooting mark on the evening, their best of the season thus far.

He talked about how coach Micah Shrewsberry shifted the game plan toward him as he started to heat up late in the first half.

“I got my first shot, I got the second shot, then coach Shrews was kind of telling me to do it more,” Sessoms said. “The first few times was just me off my instincts, then we finally went to it in the playbook.”

Sessoms spent his first two seasons of college basketball playing as a Binghamton Bearcat, where he showed that he can score with the best of the best.

He notched his career high of 40 points in an overtime win over Boston University back in December 2019. The Philadelphia native had four games of 30 or more points in his final season as a Bearcat.

In his time as a Nittany Lion to this point, though, Sessoms has not had to be the No. 1 scoring option.

After Penn State let interim head coach Jim Ferry go last season, a plethora of Nittany Lions entered the transfer portal.

The two leading scorers for Penn State last year, Myreon Jones and Izaiah Brockington, transferred away from the program and opened up a lot of room for their point production to be replaced.

Sessoms has stepped into his bigger offensive role in an impressive fashion so far this season, and had it clicking on all cylinders last night.

Shrewsberry talked about his senior guard’s improved decision making.

“I think him getting into the lane and then making the right decisions from there, I think that is a huge step right there,” Shrewsberry said. “‘I go to score, if I can’t score, I find the next guy, find the open guy.’”

Sessoms is now the leading scorer for the Nittany Lions with 18.3 points per game while shooting at an exceptional clip of 59.5% from the field.

He and Penn State will be back in action on Monday night when the Nittany Lions take on Cornell in their fourth game of the season.


Trevor Grady is a fourth year majoring in supply chain management. To contact him, email tmg5685@psu.edu.