BAYAMON, Puerto Rico - Penn State rallied for a 55-52 overtime victory against Providence on Friday in its second game of the Puerto Rico Tip-Off Tournament.
The Nittany Lions (2-1) struggled all night against an active Friars 2-3 zone, but rallied from a 10-point second-half deficit behind nine straight points from senior guard Tim Frazier, who led Penn State with 19 points, nine rebounds and seven assists. Jermaine Marshall hit some big threes late and finished with 13 points and five rebounds.
The Nittany Lions will take today off before returning to the floor on Sunday to face Akron (2-2), which downed UNC-Asheville, 82-63, in its second game of the tournament. That game will tip at 1:30 p.m.
The Zips fell to Oklahoma State, 69-65, on Thursday in their first game. Penn State holds a 4-1 lead in the series, with the Zips.
The score was just 16-14 at halftime, in favor of the Friars.
Dr. Naismith just called. He said we did a good job taking basketball back, Penn State coach Patrick Chambers joked. Im not the shooting coach, if thats your next question.
Chambers encouraged his team to keep shooting despite the early struggles from the field.
You keep shooting and the routine, habits all come out, he said. You just have to let it fly and thats all you can do. It was nice to see this group grow up a little bit, kind of mesh a little bit.
Providence led for most of the game and pushed its edge to 30-20 with 12:28 to play after five straight points from LaDontae Henton. A Frazier three and a Marshall bucket sparked Penn State, which cut the lead to one 32-31 with an 8-0 run.
Providence rebuilt its margin to four, 35-31, after a free throw from Kadeem Batts. He led the Friars with 17 points and 11 rebounds and hit 13-of-15 at the foul line.
Frazier then took command, scoring nine straight points, as Penn State took a 40-37 lead with 2:23 to play. Providence answered with three free throws from Batts to tie the game at 40.
Marshall hit a baseline three to give Penn State a 43-41 edge with 46 seconds to play, but Batts again drew a foul and hit two at the line to knot the game at 43.
Penn State set up a play with 13 seconds remaining, but Marshall's baseline three was off, and the teams went to overtime.
Providence took the early lead in OT after a Josh Fortune jumper, but Penn State responded with a jumper from D.J. Newbill, a three from Marshall and a layup from freshman Brandon Taylor to take a 50-45 lead with 3:05 left.
Providence would get no closer than three the rest of the way as a Ross Travis tip-in and free throws from Frazier and Newbill held the Friars at bay.
Penn State shot 26 percent in the first half, but warmed up to 41 percent in the second half and was clutch when it counted, going 4-of-6 to score 12 points in overtime and finished at 37 percent shooting for the game.
Both teams slogged through a tough shooting first half as Providence took a 16-14 lead to the locker room despite a stretch of more than seven minutes without scoring. Penn State hit just 6-of-23 from the field and 1-of-10 from three verus the Friars' 2-3 zone. Providence fared worse, shooting 5-of-20 from the field against the Lions' man-to-man.
Frazier was held to just one point, on a free throw with 5:04 to play in the half, in the first 20 minutes as he went 0-of-6 from the floor.
PENN ST. (2-1): Newbill 3-5 3-3 9, Marshall 4-18 2-2 13, Frazier 6-13 6-10 19, Graham 0-0 0-0 0, Travis 3-8 0-2 6, Taylor 2-3 0-0 4, Colella 0-4 0-0 0, Borovnjak 2-2 0-2 4. Totals 20-53 11-19 55.
PROVIDENCE (2-2): Fortune 6-12 2-4 15, Batts 2-12 13-15 17, Goldsbrough 2-2 1-3 6, Bancroft 1-2 1-2 3, Henton 4-16 0-0 11, Kofane 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 15-44 17-24 52.
Halftime-Providence 16-14. End Of Regulation-Tied 43. 3-Point Goals-Penn St. 4-21 (Marshall 3-12, Frazier 1-3, Travis 0-1, Newbill 0-1, Colella 0-4), Providence 5-16 (Henton 3-10, Goldsbrough 1-1, Fortune 1-4, Bancroft 0-1). Fouled Out-Borovnjak. Rebounds-Penn St. 35 (Frazier 9), Providence 36 (Batts 11). Assists-Penn St. 10 (Frazier 7), Providence 6 (Bancroft, Fortune 3). Total Fouls-Penn St. 21, Providence 19. A-4,224.