for this game

Shorthanded Purdue falls at Penn State

Jan 7, 2009 - 7:10 AM STATE COLLEGE, Pennsylvania (Ticker) -- Although its opponent was not at full strength, Penn State showed that it will not be a pushover in the Big Ten Conference this season.

Talor Battle had 21 points and nine assists and Stanley Pringle added 18 as Penn State started fast and used a big second-half run to post a 67-64 victory over No. 14 Purdue on Tuesday.

The Nittany Lions (13-3, 2-1 Big Ten), who won seven conference games last season for the first time since the 2000-01 campaign, held a 41-27 advantage in rebounding and had 22 offensive boards.

"We did a great job rebounding the basketball," Penn State coach Ed DeChellis said. "I felt we needed to set the tempo this evening. I challenged our kids to do that. I thought they came out well to start the game."

Penn State scored the game's first 14 points but found themselves trailing, 55-51, with 10:21 to play.

However, the Boilermakers (11-4, 0-2), who were without starters Robbie Hummel and Chris Kramer due to injury, went scoreless for 8:04 as the Nittany Lions went on a 13-0 run to take a 64-55 lead with 2:59 left to play. Danny Morrissey opened and closed the burst with a 3-pointer.

"I was proud of our guys' effort after you get down 17-2," Purdue coach Matt Painter said. "It had the making for a blowout. Obviously, when you lose guys like Robbie (Hummel) and Chris (Kramer), as a coach you're going to have a lack of experience in terms of guys who are starting the game.

"I thought defensively we did some better things after that right up until the eight, nine ten-minute mark when we had a four-point lead. Then I thought we pressed a little bit, took some ill-advised shots, and then we had some breakdowns on the defensive end."

Freshman Lewis Jackson made a pair of 3-pointers to pull Purdue within 64-61 with 59 seconds remaining, but that would be as close as it could get. Andrew Jones had a layup with 25 seconds to go and Purdue turned the ball over on his next possession.

"They exerted a lot of energy early, and they were able to come back," Battle said of Purdue. "The only run that really counts is the last one, and we made that one tonight."

After the Nittany Lions stormed out of the gates, the Boilermakers started to chip away and made three consecutive 3-pointers during a 14-6 run that cut the deficit to 37-31 with 3:15 left. Purdue trailed, 41-33, at intermission.

Purdue continued to keep the game close after the break and E'Twaun Moore's jumper pulled the Boilermakers within, 46-45, with 15:11 remaining.

The Boilermakers finally took the lead as Moore scored eight points during a 10-2 run that gave Purdue a 55-51 advantage with 10:21 to play.

Moore finished 21 points to pace Purdue, which committed 16 turnovers.

"I think everybody in the Big Ten takes Penn State seriously," Painter said. "It's a by-product of youth when you start four freshmen that sometimes aren't going to be dialed in. That's just the way it is. Now, with a couple seniors in Pringle and (Jamelle) Cornley and Battle evolving into an all-conference type guy, now you have those other pieces with guys who got a lot of experience last year. Everybody in the Big Ten understands that they're good."