Credit Source: Penn State University
Dread, Lundy Lead Nittany Lions to 72-69 Win Over VCU
Sophomore forward Lundy scores career-best 32; Dread has third career game-winning 3-pointer
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. – Penn State men’s basketball junior guard Myles Dread drained a 3-pointer at the buzzer to give the Nittany Lions a 72-69 victory and move the Nittany Lions to 2-0 on the season. The Rams tied the game at 69 with 20 seconds left in the game before Dread’s third career game-winning 3-pointer saw Penn State leave the court with the win.
With the clock winding down, senior guard Jamari Wheeler found Dread on the right wing. Dread rose up and drilled his first field goal of the contest with 9.5 seconds to play.
The Nittany Lions and Rams battled back and forth until the final minute and scored identical 37-point totals in the second half. With 20 seconds remaining, VCU’s Jamir Watkins drove to the lane and made his lone field goal of the game with a layup to tie the contest at 69.
Sophomore forward Seth Lundy turned in a career performance with 32 points on 11-19 shooting. Lundy poured in five 3-pointers while grabbing four rebounds and swatting two shots. Twenty of Lundy’s 32 points came in second stanza against the Rams.
“That last possession really showed who we are as a team,” said Penn State interim head coach Jim Ferry. “I don’t mean it was just like we just drew it up, I meant it more as how much these guys trust each other, how much these guys love each other. They played for each other, which I thought showed in that last possession. Everybody touched it, the extra pass. Myles was having a tough night, hadn’t made a shot, and still Jamari wasn’t hesitant to throw an extra pass and Myles wasn’t hesitant to let it go. I thought our guys played really, really hard. Obviously, it was early, some sloppy basketball. I think they are focused on the right things, focused on each other, and focused on getting better every day. That was a good win for us, especially this early in the season, against a very,very good VCU team.”
Lundy hit two free throws to give the Nittany Lions an eight-point lead at 68-60 with 3:46 left in the game. The Rams capitalized on Penn State’s missed shots and turnovers as VCU’s Nah’Shon Nyland hit a triple on a fast break and then a Ward layup cut the deficit to three, 68-65. Ward scored again for a one-point contest, 68-67, with 20 ticks left on the clock.
Sessoms connected on his second free throw attempt for a 69-67 score and the Nittany Lions called a time out before Ward’s tying basket.
Junior transfer Sam Sessoms provided another strong effort off the bench, scoring 17 points, his Penn State best, on 6-11 shooting. Senior forward John Harrar and Wheeler tied the game-high total in rebonds with eight.
The Nittany Lions used a 12-3 run to take a 19-11 lead with 9:42 to play in the half after the two teams were nearly even through the first five minutes of play. VCU had an 8-7 lead before Penn State grabbed it back at 12-11. A 7-0 run put PSU at 19-11, but the Rams used an 8-0 of their own over 2:40 to take a 27-26 lead.
Sessoms was a spark off the Nittany Lions’ bench, scoring seven points and ending a the Rams’ streak with a nice drive to the basket for the layup and foul.
Penn State outscored VCU 9-5 in the final 3:16 of the first half to go up 25-32 at the break.
Forward Levi Stockard III led VCU in scoring with 13 points.
The Nittany Lions play host host Seton Hall on Sunday, December 6, at 8:00 p.m. ET on the Big Ten Network.
- The Nittany Lions start their season 2-0 for the fourth-straight year and for the sixth time in the last seven years.
- Penn State wins the first meeting between the two schools. Interim head coach Jim Ferry is now 1-5 vs. VCU, having faced the Rams in the five previous games while head coach at Duquesne.
- PSU is 55-15 (78.6 win percentage) since 2017-18 when it leads at the half.
- Sophomore guard Seth Lundy had his first career 30-point game with 32 points. It was the first 30-point game in the BJC since Lamar Stevens had 33 vs. Minnesota on Feb. 8, 2020.
- Dread now has three career game-winning 3 pointers: vs. Yale (11/23/2019), vs. Rutgers (2/26/2020) and vs. VCU (12/2/2020).
- Senior guard Jamari Wheeler tied his career best in rebounds with eight.
- Junior guard Myreon Jones tied his career bests in assists (6) and steals (4).