Stevens and Carr Lead Penn State Past Maryland
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. -- Penn State added a critical conference win to its resume on Wednesday night with a 74-70 victory over Maryland at the Bryce Jordan Center. Both teams put on a display of efficient offense all night, as both shot over 52 percent from the field and made nine threes each as a team.
It was an important night for Penn State though, as this is now the latest the Nittany Lions have stood above .500 in Big Ten play since the 2008-2009 season.
Lamar Stevens had the hot hand all game, leading the way with 25 points on 10-12 shooting while playing all 40 minutes.
“Lamar Stevens was off the charts,” Maryland head coach Mark Turgeon said. “Tonight we had no answer for him. He made some incredible shots. He’s a heck of a player.”
“Lamar stepped up for us tonight; we needed every one of those points,” Penn State head coach Pat Chambers said. “I felt like in practice yesterday Lamar was ready to go...we felt that Lamar could really take advantage of his size and athleticism against Maryland.”
For Stevens, Wednesday was his eighth 20-plus point game of the season and the most points he has scored since Jan. 12 against Nebraska.
“My coaches and my teammates really instill a lot of confidence in me,” Stevens said. “I feed off of that and their confidence to get me the ball in the right positions.”
Tony Carr continued to play like an All-Big Ten point guard as well, posting 16 points and six assists, while also knocking down four of his six three-point attempts.
Another big storyline is that Penn State is now 4-1 since Josh Reaves has returned to the lineup, after having to sit out four games in January for academic reasons. While Reaves may not be one of the bigger names on this Penn State team, he has clearly proven to be one of its more important pieces this season.
“He doesn’t need the credit. He’s just one of those guys who goes out and plays as hard as he can,” Chambers said. “He’s going to defend and rebound. He’ll be the guy that guards the other team’s best player, and when he has opportunities to score and make plays, he’s that guy that does it for us.”
“Josh is really the heart and soul of this team,” Stevens said. “His energy is unmatched; his defense is unmatched, and he’s really our defensive leader. He just gives this team some extra confidence.”
Maryland shot a higher percentage than Penn State from the field, from beyond the arc, and from the free throw line, but the Nittany Lions committed four fewer turnovers and outrebounded the Terps 27-23.
“In this league, you’ve got to rebound,” Chambers said. “Last year we were a poor rebounding team, and it’s been a point of emphasis...we did a good job of that.”
Penn State improves to 19-7 (7-6 Big Ten) with the win and will be on the road at Illinois this Saturday. There is still an outside chance for Penn State to make the NCAA Tournament if they can finish the rest of the regular season out strong.
Will Desautelle is a sophomore majoring in broadcast journalism. To contact him, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
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