Both Big Ten teams of the Nebraska Cornhuskers and Penn State Nittany Lions are known for their defensive efficiency. So coming into Saturday's contest, it was pretty evident that both teams were going to be in for a low scoring game. Just how low scoring might have been a surprise to both teams.
The Nebraska Cornhuskers simply could not get the ball in the basket, especially in the first half when they scored a miserably pathetic 13 points. As a whole for the game they shot 15-51 from the floor (29%), and 2-20 from three point range (10%). Those are numbers the Cornhuskers simply cannot put up if they expect to win. As a team that was a preseason top 25, and looking to make a return trip to the NCAA postseason Championship tournament, the Cornhuskers have simply disappointed this season, maybe expectations were set a little too high.
Penn State though was able to take advantage of their shots behind the three point arc, as they would go 9-21 there as a team (43%). They had a balanced effort from their starting lineup as Sophomore Guard Geno Thorpe led the team in scoring with 14 points, while D.J. Newbill and Brandon Taylor each added 11 points, and Shep Garner added 9 points of his own. Another key area for the Nittany Lions in this game is that they won the rebounding battle. They had 39 rebounds compared to Nebraska's 26, which helped them keep momentum in their favor.
Next up for the Penn State Nittany Lions (15-9, 3-8) is a trip to Columbus, Ohio to face the Ohio State Buckeyes (17-6, 6-4) on Wednesday, February 11. The Nebraska Cornhuskers (13-10, 5-6) will have a tough challenge as well as they return home to the Pinnacle Bank Arena in Lincoln to host the Wisconsin Badgers (21-2, 9-1) on Tuesday, February 9.