No. 12 Purdue pulls away from Penn State for share of Big Ten lead
WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. — Carsen Edwards scored 15 of his 21 points in the second half Saturday and Matt Haarms added a career-high 18 points to lead No. 12 Purdue past Penn State, 76-64.
The Boilermakers (18-7, 11-3 Big Ten) reclaimed a share of the conference lead with their ninth win in 10 games.
Lamar Stevens finished with 18 points and Rasir Bolton had 17 for Penn State (9-16, 2-12). The Nittany Lions have lost have 10 of 12.
The Edwards-Haarms combination completely changed the game early in the second half. The duo teamed up to score nine points in a 14-2 run that turned a four-point game into a 50-34 lead.
Penn State answered with six straight to cut the deficit to 50-40 and eventually got as close as 61-56 when Josh Reaves completed a three-point play with 4:27 left. But Purdue closed it out with an 8-0 run.
It was an odd game. The Big Ten’s two top scorers — Edwards and Stevens — both played through foul trouble and turned the ball over a combined 15 times. Neither team followed its usual script in the first half, either.
Instead, the Nittany Lions made three 3-pointers in the first four minutes to help give them a 17-10 lead. They made only two more the rest of the game.
Purdue, meanwhile, committed 12 first-half turnovers — more than its final tally in all but seven games this season. The Boilermakers wound up with a season-high 23.
And yet with Edwards making only one basket over the final 13½ minutes of the first half, the Boilermakers somehow scrapped their way back. They tied the score at 19-19, took their first lead on Nojel Eastern’s layup with 6:47 left and closed out the half with a 33-30 advantage.