While ‘the Game’ was happening Saturday, five Big Ten basketball games took place. Purdue, Michigan, Maryland, Iowa and Penn State played. Let’s see how they did.
Purdue 79, NJIT 68
17th ranked Purdue played NJIT as part of the Cancun Challenge. They came away with an 11 point win over the Highlanders. Caleb Swanigan highlighted this game. He played 33 minutes and scored 22 points without missing a shot, in part to him only shooting in the paint and free throws. He went 6-6 in the paint and 10-10 from the line while also collecting 15 rebounds, 3 assists and only 1 personal foul. Swanigan put the team on his shoulders while others were struggling from the field. Vince Edwards was the only other starter in double figures with 12 points. Carsen Edwards came off the bench to play 23 minutes and score 19 points to help the Boilermakers to victory.
Michigan 64, Mount Saint Mary’s 47
Michigan cruised to a victory over Mount Saint Mary’s behind the work of Zak Irvin, who scored 14 points on 6-13 shooting and 2-5 from three. Two other starters made it in to double figures for the Wolverines as Moritz Wagner had 13 and Derrick Walton Jr. scored 12. It was a relatively quiet night shooting for the Wolverines, but their defense carried them. They held the Mountaineers to 37.5% shooting in the paint and 43% from three. The Wolverines shot 44% from the floor and 40% from three.
Penn State 74, George Washington 68
Penn State was able to pull off a win against a tough George Washington team that came to fight. Freshman Tony Carr struggled from the field, shooting 3-8 in the paint. He finished with 12 points, 6 rebounds, 5 assists and 2 steals for the day. Watkins, Stevens, Carr and Garner finished in double figures. Watkins led with 20 points on 7-14 shooting and 6-7 from the charity stripe. The bench only accounted for 11 of Penn State’s 74 points. It was great to see the Nittany Lions pull out a win, but there are still problems that will need to be fixed before conference play rolls around.
Maryland 69, Kansas State 68
Maryland is young, but they are finding ways to win.
Maryland is 5-0 this year in games decided by six points or less. Young Terps are 7-0 heading into Tuesday's game with Pitt in College Park.— Jon Rothstein (@JonRothstein) November 27, 2016
Melo Trimble is a cult hero because of what he just did. Simply does not allow Maryland to lose. Terps with a huge triumph over Kansas St.— Jon Rothstein (@JonRothstein) November 27, 2016
Jon Rothstein said it best. Melo Trimble is simply not letting his very young team lose. Trimble made a layup with 6.6 seconds left to put the Terrapins ahead of Kansas State. Trimble also led all scorers with 18 points. Freshman Justin Jackson was the only other starter to score in double figures, adding 11 points on the night. Michal Cekovsky was right behind, coming off of the bench with 16 points.
Memphis 100, Iowa 92
Iowa has regressed this season and it showed once again yesterday against Memphis. Peter Jok made his case for Big Ten Player of The Year. In a dazzling performance, he put the Hawkeyes on his back and scored 42 points on 11-16 shooting in the paint, 8-11 from three, and 12-12 from the charity stripe. He also collected 6 rebounds and 1 assist. In a difficult start to the season for the Hawkeyes, Jok has been extremely valuable and shown growth.
It was a pretty solid Saturday of college basketball in the Big Ten. Players are starting to make names for themselves and prove themselves as they head in to the final month of non-conference play.