Penguins Hang on For 84-80 Win Over IUPUI

Cameron Morse (Photo By Jose Juarez)
Cameron Morse (Photo By Jose Juarez)

Indianapolis, Ind. – Senior Cameron Morse scored a game-high 28 points and the Youngstown State men's basketball team held off a late IUPUI surge to hang on for an 84-80 victory at Indiana Farmers Coliseum on Saturday.

The Penguins improve to 7-20 overall and 5-9 in the Horizon League while the Jaguars fall to 8-16 and 5-9 in the league.

Freshman Garrett Covington had 14 points, including 12 in the first half, senior Jaylen Benton posted 12 points and junior Tyree Robinson added 11 points for the Penguins, who made nine 3-pointers. In the contest, Morse made eight field goals, including four 3-pointers and went a perfect 8-of-8 from the free-throw line.

Leading IUPUI was T.J. Henderson with 22 points while Ron Patterson had 17 points and Aaron Brennan added 16.

Youngstown State scored 10 of the first 15 points of the second half keyed by a pair of 3s by Morse to lead by as many as 15 at 57-42 with 16:03 left.

The Jaguars cut the lead to 66-56 midway through the second half before the Penguins regained a 14-point edge, 75-61, following a layup by Morse at the 5:23 mark.

The Jaguars went on a 16-4 run over the next four minutes to get within 79-77 with a minute left, but Morse hit three free throws to put the Penguins back up five.

Henderson's 3-point play with 29 seconds left made the score 82-80, but Robinson's breakaway dunk with 21 second left put the game away.

The Penguins played on of their best first halves of the season, shooting 53.6 percent from the floor and making six 3-pointers. For the contest, YSU shot 51.8 percent making 29-of-56 attempts.

Youngstown State led by as many as 13 points and never trailed in the half.

The Penguins led 25-16 before the Jags sliced the deficit to three, 25-22, with 7:56 left. YSU answered with an 11-4 run to push the lead to 10, 36-26, with 4:25 to go.

Youngstown State held a 10-point lead, 47-37, at the intermission.

The Penguins return home to host Oakland, Wednesday, Feb. 14. Tipoff is slated for 7 p.m.