Posted November 13, 2018 09:59:03 Penn State is undefeated and has a chance to become the first Big Ten team to win the conference tournament.
The Nittany Lions (26-7, 14-4) beat Villanova (20-15, 11-8) 78-73 in the second round of the Big Ten Tournament on Tuesday night.
The Wolfpack (25-7.
15-4), who are ranked fourth in the Big East, are coming off a win over North Carolina State on Saturday and a loss to Wisconsin in the first round of their first-round game.
They have now won 10 straight regular-season games, and beat Purdue, Indiana and Purdue State.
The last time Penn State beat Villavision (28-6, 12-4, No. 12) in the tournament was March 3, 2019.
Penn State leads the series 4-1, with Villanova on the verge of a perfect 11th straight regular season win.
Villanova shot 53 percent and had 20 assists to help the Nittas build a 33-15 lead at halftime.
The Eagles got to the free throw line 16 times in the final four minutes and had a 14-0 edge at the line in the game.
Villavision closed the game on a 13-3 run, with senior guard Evan Hinkle scoring 13 of his 15 points in the period.
Penn State shot 55 percent from the field, and made 20 of 31 free throws.
Villard’s Isaiah Wilkins had a team-high 20 points for the Eagles, who shot just 34 percent from behind the arc.
Penn Statings has Villanova as the Big 12’s most efficient team in that department.
Pennsylvania had lost its last three games and were coming off back-to-back losses to Michigan State and Wisconsin, and were playing without senior guard Johnathan Motley, who was suspended after a fight with Penn State’s senior associate head coach and athletic director Mark Dantonio.
Wilkins led the way with 17 points, six assists and four steals.
PennStatings has the Eagles second-leading scorer, sophomore guard Dwayne Sutton, with 15 points.
Penn Statings also has Pennsylvania’s best player in the frontcourt, freshman forward Justin Anderson, averaging 13.3 points per game.
Penn Staterry also has junior guard Aaron Harrison leading the team in assists with five.
The Big Ten is set to open the tournament Thursday.