Purdue posts dominant second half, pulls away for win over Penn State at The Palestra
Purdue might have opened the week with its first loss of the season, but the Boilermakers have responded with back-to-back wins since the loss to Rutgers. That included Sunday’s win, a 76-63 victory over Penn State at The Palestra in Philadelphia.
Heading into halftime, the Boilermakers were in a bit of trouble, thanks in large part to Jalen Pickett. He was on fire with the Nittany Lions carrying a 37-31 lead into the break.
The second half turned into a different story for Purdue with Matt Painter’s squad exploding for 45 points after halftime. Zach Edey, along with freshmen guards Braden Smith and Fletcher Loyer, were the driving forces for the Boilermakers.
When it was all said and done, Edey finished with an impressive double-double that included 30 points, 13 rebounds, 3 assists and 3 blocks. That point total ties for the second-most in a single game for Edey in his career and is the third game of 30+ points for Edey this season.
To compliment Edey’s work in the post, Smith and Loyer combined to go 7-for-13 from 3-point range in the win. Smith finished with 15 points, 7 assists and 6 rebounds with just 1 turnover. Loyer chipped in 17 points, 2 rebounds, 2 assists and a steal.
For Penn State, Pickett finished the game with a team-high 26 points and approached a triple-double with 9 rebounds and 8 assists. Unfortunately, Seth Lundy was the only other Nittany Lion player with more than 8 points as Lundy added 14 points, 5 rebounds and 2 steals.
After taking their first loss of the season, it’s possible the Boilermakers lose their No. 1 ranking on the AP Poll on Monday, but the rebound from that loss to Rutgers has been encouraging. The Boilermakers next play Nebraska on Friday.
Penn State has suffered back-to-back losses since a 5-game winning streak but the team still looks much improved from last season. Penn State will face Indiana Wednesday.