Penn State stuns Northwestern at the buzzer in overtime
It is now March. It’s time for the best basketball of the season to be played right now.
After Penn State’s heartbreaking collapse at home on Sunday versus Rutgers, it seemed like their NCAA Tournament hopes were all but over. Coach Micah Shrewsberry stressed after the game that he had confidence in his team to be able to respond on the road against Northwestern in their Senior Night game.
That was a high vote of confidence considering Penn State’s road struggles this season and Northwestern’s success at home with only four prior losses.
Shrewsberry was right. His team responded and pulled off a huge road upset in overtime.
Senior guard Camren Wynter was sensational. He scored a game-high 24 points with four threes. His most important one of the night came at the buzzer in overtime.
Jalen Pickett missed a fadeaway with eight seconds left. Freshman forward Evan Mahaffey outhustled three Wildcats and corralled the offensive rebound. He then threw a pass back to Andrew Funk who found Wynter in the corner for an open three.
Dagger. Game winner.
ICE IN HIS VEINS. 🧊@iamcamrenwynter gives @PennStateMBB the lead with 0.7 seconds left. 😱 pic.twitter.com/uLZoojPKZN
— Big Ten Network (@BigTenNetwork) March 2, 2023
It wasn’t easy for the Nittany Lions. They started the game slow, scoring five points in the first eight minutes of the game. With over seven minutes left in the first half they were in a 10-point hole.
The offense eventually came late in the half. They scored 14 points in the last five and a half minutes to go into the locker room down four.
Two minutes into the second half, Penn State took their first lead of the game since it was 5-3 in the opening minutes. After that, this game was a dogfight.
It felt like Northwestern was going to pull away at any point. The patented home Big Ten team run was right around the corner. But every time they started to pull away, a Penn State player would hit a big shot to keep them in the game.
There were three ties and five lead changes in the second half, including the last minute being tied at 61.
Right at the end of regulation Funk had a wide-open look to win it at the buzzer, but the three rimmed out.
After the poor shooting from seniors Funk and Seth Lundy on Sunday, they responded with big-time shots on the road. Each player hit four threes and combined to go 8-18 from deep. Funk finished with 17 points and eight big rebounds. Lundy finished with 14 points and six rebounds of his own.
But it was Wynter time in this one. The senior guard has been on a tear lately, averaging 18ppg in his last four games. This was his most important game in a Penn State uniform, keeping their March Madness dreams alive.
Pickett had a quiet scoring night, but finished with 11 assists and set the Penn State all-time record for assists in a season. Northwestern senior guard Boo Buie finished with 20 points. Sophomore guard Brooks Barnhizer added 19 off the bench.
Penn State’s next game will be at Noon on Sunday against Maryland. This will be their Senior Night game where they honor the seniors in the program.
The game will air on Big Ten Network.
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