Men's basketball falls to No. 6 N.C. State at Puerto Rico Tip-Off

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico -- Penn State (1-1) couldn’t get its shooting on track and fell 72-55 to No. 6-ranked North Carolina State (2-0) Thursday (Nov. 15) in its first game of the Puerto Rico Tip-Off in Bayamon, Puerto Rico.
Penn State started 2-of-10 from the floor, warmed up briefly, and finished hitting 31 percent from the floor and 3-of-19 (15.8 percent) from three against a long and athletic Wolfpack squad picked as the favorite to win the ACC. N.C. State shot 50 percent from the floor (8-of-16 from three) and had a 22-2 advantage in scoring off the bench paced by freshmen T.J. Warren’s 22 points and eight rebounds.
Tim Frazier (Houston, Texas) paced the Nittany Lions with 23 points and added five rebounds as he recorded his 20th career 20-point game and became the 30th 1,000-point scorer in program history. D.J. Newbill (Philadelphia, Pa.) chipped in 13 points and Jermaine Marshall (Etters, Pa.) 11 points and eight rebounds. Jon Graham tied a career high with 10 rebounds and had four points.
ACC preseason Player of the Year C.J. Leslie had 14 points for N.C. State and freshman Rodney Purvis added 12 points.
Penn State came out with energy and was winning battles defensively and on the glass early as the game was tied at 8-8 at the 14:55 media timeout. But, the Lions offensive struggles eventually caught up with them as N.C. State used a 7-0 run to open a 15-8 lead after five-straight points from Warren.
Warren’s three with 9:22 to play in the first half made it 22-12. Frazier got his first point of the game with a three and followed with a nifty flip shot to cut the N.C. State lead to 26-19. The Lions got within six, 28-22, when Marshall drained a three with just over four minutes remaining. Frazier scored nine of Penn State’s final 12 points in the half to keep Penn State close after shooting 33 percent in the half.
The Wolfpack scored the next five points, including a Purvis three, to lead 33-22 and went to the half leading 35-26 after a pair of Leslie free throws.
N.C. State used an 8-0 run early in the second half to push its lead to 17, 47-30, following a nice turn-around jumper from Leslie. Frazier ended the run with a lay-up, but the Wolfpack out-scored the Lions 16-6 over the next four minutes to take a commanding 63-38 lead following back-to-back threes by senior Scott Wood and a Warren three with 9:15 to play.
Penn State would eventually chip the lead down to 14, 65-51, after a Newbill three with 2:44 to play, but wouldn’t be able to find enough offense on this night to down one of the top teams in the nation.
Penn State will face the loser of the Providence (2-0) vs. Massachusetts (1-0) game being played late Thursday night in Puerto Rico. That game will be played at 7:30 p.m. (ET) on Friday and will be shown on ESPN3.
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Last Updated November 16, 2012