skip navigation
Screen shot 2015 04 03 at 2.35.51 pm

Iowa Outlasts Penn State in OT, 81-77

02/28/2015, 8:30pm EST
By Anna Pitingolo

Anna Pitingolo (@anna_pitingolo)

One week after losing to Northwestern by 21 points, Penn State was ready to put the past behind them and come out swinging against Iowa.

And even when the going got tough, the Nittany Lions held on and kept the game close against the Hawkeyes. They were so close, in fact, that they sent the game into overtime despite trailing with 18 seconds left.

But close wasn't enough, and Penn State eventually fell to Iowa, 81-77 Saturday night in University Park.

Iowa held the lead for a good chunk of the second half, leading by as many as seven. But Penn State was not going away quietly. With 7:39 left in the game, the Nittany Lions went on a 7-0 run to tie it up at 61.

Brandon Taylor sank a three from the corner to put Penn State up 66-64. Iowa quickly responded with four straight points to pull ahead and after four missed baskets by Penn State, it seemed that the Hawkeyes had the lead for good.

But D.J. Newbill was fouled going up for a shot and nailed both free throws to tie the game up at 68, and Penn State held Iowa on their last possession to send the game into overtime.

Iowa hit back-to-back threes to open up overtime and was able to eat up the clock before Geno Thorpe was able to find the basket to slow down the Hawkeyes momentum.

Newbill tied up the game off a jumper with 47 seconds left, but Thorpe fouled Mike Gesell on the ensuing possession. Gesell made the first of two free throws. He missed the second, but Penn State coughed up the rebound.

Another foul against Thorpe sent Aaron White to the line, and he sank both to give Iowa the three point lead with 29 seconds left. White finished the game going 11-for-12 from the line

Free throws made all the difference in the game. Both teams were in the bonus with 12 minutes left in the second period, but Iowa was able to convert much better than Penn State.

The Hawkeyes were 100 percent from the charity stripe (14-for-14) until White finally missed one with 8:07 left in regulation. Iowa finished 25-for-27 (92.6 percent) in the game. Penn State finished going 13-for-20 (65 percent).

"[We emphasize free throws] quite a bit," Iowa head coach Fran McCaffery said. "We do a lot of free throw shooting, we do competitive free throw shooting. Over the break we shoot hundreds and hundreds and hundreds when we're not in session and then we stress it in the offseason. If you're going to be an attack team that drives the ball, you have to be able to make free throws."

White ended the game with four straight free throws to give the Hawkeyes the four point lead it would keep.

The entire game was back-and-forth between the two teams. There were eight lead changes throughout the game, and the score was tied seven times.

Penn State had four players in double digits, which combined for 60 of Penn State's points. After finishing with three points against Northwester, Newbill had a game-high 19.  Shep Garner had 17 before he fouled out with three seconds left in overtime.

"You have four guys in double figures, we need to win that game," Penn State head coach Pat Chambers said. "Turnovers really hurt us, rebounding hurt us at timely positions, and we fouled. And they [Iowa] shot really good [free throws]."

Iowa had the advantage in the game with turnovers. The Hawkeyes forced 15 Penn State turnovers, and scored 20 points off of them. Penn State, in comparison only had 13 points off of 10 turnovers.

The Nittany Lions had control for much of the first half, and were able to go up by 12 with just under 12 minutes left thanks to a 14-2 run that included three 3-pointers by Garner. But Iowa came storming back, cutting the Lions' lead to just six.

The Hawkeyes ended the half on a 9-0 run to take a 31-29 lead into halftime.

Penn State plays its final home game of the season on Wednesday night, hosting Ohio State at 6 p.m. in the Bryce Jordan Center.

Recruiting News:

Tag(s): Home  Anna Pitingolo