The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA

Local Sports

January 30, 2014

Late jumper clinches Penn State victory

COLUMBUS, Ohio — D.J. Newbill hit a pull-up jumper over Aaron Craft with 2 seconds left in overtime, lifting Penn State to a 71-70 victory over No. 24 Ohio State and ending years of futility against the Buckeyes.

Newbill, who led the Nittany Lions (11-10, 2-6 Big Ten) with 25 points, hit a 3 that forced overtime. Brandon Taylor added 19 points and Graham Woodward had 11 as Penn State ended Ohio State’s string of victories in the series at 18.

LaQuinton Ross scored 16 points, Lenzelle Smith Jr. had 15 and Amir Williams added 12 for Ohio State (16-5, 3-5), which has lost five of six after a 15-0 start that saw it rise to No. 3 in the polls.

Buckeyes coach Thad Matta was 17-0 against Penn State since taking over as head coach in 2004-05.

Penn State improved to 2-11 at Value City Arena and is 3-4 on the road this season, winning for the first time in Big Ten play after losing their first three.

In the overtime, Taylor gave the Lions a quick lead on a follow before Williams hit a free throw and Smith made a jumper to put Ohio State up 68-67.

Smith was then hit in the face while shooting a 3 and made the last two of the three free throws for a three-point lead.

After the teams traded misses, Newbill ended up with the ball atop the key with the shot clock winding down. He drove the lane and got off the layup just in time to cut the lead to 70-69 with 39.4 seconds left.

The Buckeyes then turned it over when Ross drove and passed to Williams, the ball going out of bounds off his hands with 13 seconds left.

Penn State brought the ball down with Newbill waving off his teammates to take the ball one-on-one against Craft, one of the best defenders in the Big Ten.

He crossed over on the dribble and pulled up for a 14-foot jumper that caught nothing but net with 2 seconds left.

After an Ohio State timeout, Craft took the inbounds pass and drove over midcourt but was unable to get off a shot before the buzzer sounded.

Penn State trailed by four points at halftime and kept hanging around although they never took the lead down the stretch.

Ohio State led 55-46 but the Nittany Lions would not go away.

Penn State drew to 60-55 on a dunk by Jordan Dickerson with just under 4 minutes left, then within three on a short jumper by Dickerson with 2:21 remaining.

After Ohio State’s second straight miss, Newbill poured in a high-arcing 3 from in front of the Nittany Lions’ bench to tie it at 62 with 1:09 left.

Craft drove into traffic with 42 seconds left and the ball went out of bounds. The closest official signaled Penn State ball, but the referees still went to the scorer’s table to review the possession.

After watching replays, officials Mike Kitts and Gene Steratore deliberated before giving the ball to the Buckeyes.

With 12 seconds left on the shot clock, the Buckeyes inbounded under their own basket.

With the crowd howling that time was running out on the shot clock, Craft drove and was bumped as he flipped up a shot that bounced on the back of the rim before falling with 34 seconds left to put the Buckeyes up 64-62.

Tim Frazier then drove the length of the court and was fouled with 28.1 seconds remaining.

Despite shooting 80 percent for the season on free throws, he missed both. Smith was fouled on the rebound.

In the double bonus, Smith missed the first badly but made the second to make it 65-62.

After a timeout, the Nittany Lions ran a weave with Newbill hitting a 3 with 13 seconds left to tie it.

After a timeout, Smith missed a 3-pointer with 2 seconds left. Scott got the rebound but his follow missed as the buzzer sounded.

Ohio State’s coaches wore lapel pins with a purple ribbon in support of former staffer Dan Peters, now at the University of Akron, and his fight against pancreatic cancer. Peters’ son Danny was a member of the Buckeyes’ national runner-up team in 2007.

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