Dawson Garcia scored 20 points on 7-for-13 shooting and Minnesota held on for an 83-74 win over Penn State in a Big Ten Conference matchup on Saturday evening in University Park, Penn.
Cam Christie added 19 points on 7-for-11 shooting for Minnesota (13-7, 4-5 Big Ten), which snapped a four-game losing streak. Joshua Ola-Joseph finished with 14 points.
Ace Baldwin Jr. scored 16 points to lead Penn State (9-11, 3-6). Qudus Wahab finished with 15 points, and Nick Kern Jr. and Kanye Clary contributed 11 apiece.
The score was even at 70-70 with 2:50 to go. Penn State squandered a 16-point lead in the second half, fell behind by as many as seven just over 13 minutes into the period and battled back to even the score after a 9-2 run.
A dunk by Parker Fox gave Minnesota a 72-70 edge with 2:18 left.
D’Marco Dunn made 1 of 2 free throws to cut the deficit to 72-71 with 1:18 to go.
Christie made a layup for Minnesota on the next possession, and Ola-Joseph soon completed a three-point play to put Minnesota on top 77-71 with 1:03 remaining.
Penn State failed to catch up in the final minute as the Golden Gophers made six free throws.
The Nittany Lions led by 16 points with 19:39 remaining.
Minnesota went on a 12-0 run to pull within 47-43 with 17:04 to play. Elijah Hawkins and Christie each made a 3-pointer during the scoring binge.
Ola-Joseph had a dunk for the Golden Gophers to even the score at 52 with 14:08 left. Less than a minute later, Hawkins sank a pair of free throws to give Minnesota a 54-52 lead.
Minnesota increased its lead to 68-61 on a layup by Fox with 6:16 to go.
Penn State built a 45-31 lead at the half.
The Golden Gophers led 26-25 after Garcia made a layup with 6:59 remaining in the first half.
The Nittany Lions answered with a 15-0 run to surge ahead 40-26 with 2:50 left before halftime. Kern and Demetrius Lilley combined to score the first 12 points of the run.