No. 13 Penn State relies on 3-point flurry to win at Purdue

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. (AP) — Mike Watkins matched his season high with 19 points, and Seth Lundy added a career-high 18 Tuesday to help No. 13 Penn State rout Purdue 88-76.

The Nittany Lions (19-5, 9-4 Big Ten) made a season-high 14 3-pointers for their seventh consecutive victory that also snapped a nine-game losing streak in the series. It was Penn State’s first win at Mackey Arena since Feb. 18, 2006.

Trevion Williams finished with 17 points and 10 rebounds to lead Purdue (14-11, 7-7), which had its three-game winning streak end.

With Penn State firing on all cylinders right from the start, the Boilermakers never really had a chance.

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The Nittany Lions opened the game with six of their first seven baskets coming from beyond the arc to build a 22-14 lead midway through the first half. Penn State led 27-16 before Purdue fought back to within 33-28 late in the half.

The Nittany Lions answered with nine straight points for a 42-30 halftime lead, then opened the second half on a 13-2 run to make it 55-32. Penn State led by as many as 24.

Purdue got as close as 83-76 with 54 seconds remaining, but Penn State closed it out at the free-throw line.

BIG PICTURE

Penn State: Chalk up one more milestone for the Nittany Lions in this remarkable season — a rare road victory in a series Purdue has dominated over the years. How did they do it? By making 3s, defending hard and thwarting any challenges with timely baskets inside. No wonder Penn State is the only Big Ten team with a winning road record in league play (5-3).

Purdue: Just when it appeared the Boilermakers may have turned their season around, they hit another low in their roller-coaster season. When they couldn’t defend the perimeter, they couldn’t find enough scoring punch to fight back. The result was predictable despite a 12-4 spurt that finally cut the deficit to single digits with 1:14 to go.

STAT PACK

Penn State: Was 10 of 19 on 3s in the first half with Lundy needing only 20 minutes to make a career-high four to finish with six. … Watkins also had 10 rebounds, moving past Mike Lang (912) into second place on the school’s career list with 917. … Lamar Stevens had 16 points, John Harrar added 13 and Myles Dread scored 12. … Dread and Stevens each had five assists.

Purdue: Williams also had 10 rebounds. … Isaiah Thompson and Jahaad Proctor each had 15 points and Eric Hunter Jr. had 14. … Tuesday marked the first meeting in the series between a ranked Penn State team and an unranked Purdue team. … The Boilermakers started the day with four wins over ranked foes, tied for third in the nation.

UP NEXT

Penn State: Hosts Northwestern with a chance to pick up their 20th win Saturday.

Purdue: Hopes to rebound at Ohio State on Saturday.

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