(WAVE) - Indiana jumped out to a big lead, saw Penn State come roaring back, and then battled back for a 68-60 win over the #9 Nittany Lions on Sunday afternoon in Bloomington.
A Devonte Green three gave IU a 37-20 lead late in the first half. They led 37-24 at the break.
Penn State responded by scoring the first 12 points of the second half. A Lamar Stevens drive got them within one at 37-36.
The Nittany Lions took the lead and extended it. When Myles Dread stole the ball from IU freshman Trayce Jackson-Davis and went the distance for a lay in, it was 48-42 Penn State.
“We took a huge punch. That was, at times this season, that punch has hurt us a lot more,” IU head coach Archie Miller said. “We weren’t shook. We found a way to kind of hang in there. We had a lot of guys step up and make some plays. And I thought in the last eight minutes of the game we made almost every single hard hustle play.”
A Jerome Hunter three-pointer got the Hoosiers going and then freshman Race Thompson scored twice in the lane to give them the lead for good.
Justin Smith ripped down an offensive rebound and scored in the paint for a 51-48 cushion.
“I mean, we lose a couple in a row and everybody counts us out, everybody wants to freak out. But we never wavered,” Smith said. “This is a tough league. All the teams are good, pretty much. And you know they’re going to get you a couple times. But it’s always how you bounce back. And we responded really well. And we’re just going to build on this momentum going forward.”
They hit free throws and got some stops down the stretch for the 68-60 final margin.
Al Durham lead the Hoosiers with 14 points. Jackson-Davis added 13 and 10 rebounds. Green finished with 10 points. Penn State’s Stevens led all scorers with 29.
Indiana improves to 18-9, 8-8 in the Big Ten. They visit Purdue (14-14, 7-10) on Thursday at 7 p.m. Penn State falls to 20-7, 10-6.