Northwestern Wildcats came into State College looking for a win to get back on track after losing 3 to some top Big 10 teams.

But nobody told the very young Nittany Lions that they should lay down and let the Wildcats roll up a win. In fact the Lions just started hitting 3 pointers that took the game out of reach. NU never could catch up...

"You have to win here and we didn't" PSU 65 NU 62

The<font color="#663366"><b> Northwestern Wildcats</b></font> came into State College looking for a win to get back on track after losing 3 to some top Big 10 teams.<br> <br> But nobody told the very young <b>Nittany Lions</b> that they should lay down and let the <b>Wildcats </b>roll up a win. In fact the <b>Lions </b>just started hitting 3 pointers that took the game out of reach. <b>NU </b> never could catch up...<br>

What is going on with the Wildcats?
Junior Center Mike Thompson didn't make the trip - he's suspended. Brandon Lee is also out of action - same reason - and Gary Lee is academically ineligible.

T.J. Parker was clearly off his game at State College, and Evan Seacat had the only points [3] off the bench.

It was a game where the Cats finally took care of the ball - they only had 6 turnovers - and scored 24 points off Penn State turnovers, recording 11 steals.

What in the world is going on?

Yes, Vedran Vukusic led the team in scoring with 17. Vince Scott, starting in place of Thompson, recorded a perfect game shooting - he was 5 of 5 [4 of 4 from the arc] for 14 points. Mohamed Hachad also scored in double figures with 12. Davor Duvancic had 11.

But Penn State shot 54% from the arc and out rebounded the Cats 42-17. Penn State's forward/center Aaron Johnson actually out rebounded the entire NU team 21-17.

The Wildcats did make a run at the end of the game, closing to within 1, on a Mohamed Hachad layup that had an obvious foul, but there was no whistle. Then Travis Parker hit two freethrows to put PSU ahead with 2 seconds left. The Cats tried for the last shot, but Geary Claxton picked Davor Duvancic's pocket and the game was over.

After the game, Bill Carmody was asked about the end of the game run...

BC: It was clearly too late. Why does it take 38 minutes - our defense was horrible, a couple guys - all they could do is make open shots, tell them not to help out.

And we helped out and they knocked down the open shots. It was disappointing.
What specifically was happening for them to get those open shots.
BC: Well they were throwing the ball into [Aaron] Johnson, so we told them don't double team that guy, don't double team him - Vince [Scott] is doing a fine job on him - I don't think he scored the first half, I don't know if he scored much after that, and don't just let these other guys get off and all the way down to the end - we were helping out, no matter who it was on the perimeter, Timmy Doyle, Mohamed, T.J., all were doing the same thing.
You could see the confidence of the young Penn State kids growing as the game went on...
BC: He's [Johnson] had a few [3's] this year. I think he's 6 of 7 shooting.

Its just disappointing 'cause there's no one I could put out there that was guarding and I thought Vince was the only guy who was actually defending decently.
On Mike Jenkins steal at the end of the game, would you have preferred to have him go back out for a 3?
BC: Well I kept calling for the ref, time out, time out, 'cause Mike was going that way, and I certainly wish he did, but I could see he wasn't so the ref was standing right there and I kept calling time out and afterwards he said it didn't go through the basket yet, and I said, I didn't want it, I wanted it when he bounced it twice.

I don't know if he was trying to help me and didn't help me, but it was obvious we had to get that and so ....
Vince Scott played good defense today, he stepped up today.
BC:  Its a good thing he did because Vedran and Timmy Doyle and Davor were really - didn't do anything out there. Its just very disappointing, now Vedran's shoulder's not great, who knows.
It's his other shoulder? [the left]?
BC: Left shoulder. The trainer said it didn't pop out but I guess its loose. So we'll see where that takes us.
On the offense it looks like you did a nice job running the sets - good shots for the sbooters, and only 6 turnovers.
BC: In the second half we got layup after layup - set plays that worked, but we just weren't guarding.

Certain guys do certain things and a couple of guys all they do is make open shots. We talked about it for two days, we talked about it before the game, at halftime, we still - fall on deaf ears.
Is this the toughest situation you've faced with this team - coming off this game?
BC:  Well, yeah. you have to win here.

You have to win here and we didn't. Now we're going up against Iowa who's playing so well, so I don't know. Its going to be hard.

We're not getting production that we need from guys that we thought would come through. You can shuffle them around any way your want but I don't see any combination that's doing as well as they should be doing.
The Hawkeyes of Iowa are next, at home Wednesday night.

Coach Bill Carmody's Post Game comments [in italics] are taken from
the WGN Post Game Show
with Dave Eanet & Bob Hildebrand
and may have been edited for clarity

You can send your comments or "back door" information
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