The Rutgers men’s basketball team defeated Northwestern 64-56 on Sunday night. The Scarlet Knights (10-6, 6-6) took home their third straight win as the team continues to climb up the Big Ten standings. Rutgers also recorded their third Big Ten road win of the season.
The Knights entered the game using the same starting five as the previous two games. Rutgers is now 3-0 while using their current starting lineup.
The Knights started off the game on a 10-2 run in the early going. As the half progressed, Rutgers expanded the lead to as high as 20 points, leading 31-11 around the 9-minute mark.
The Wildcats (6-9, 3-8), propelled by an 18-3 run to end the first half, climbed back into the game to cut the lead to five for the Knights entering halftime. Rutgers went into the break leading 34-29.
Starting the second half, the Knights were able to push their lead up to nine, leading 42-33 at the 16-minute mark. Rutgers maintained its cushion as the second half progressed, leading 52-38 at the 8-minute mark.
The Wildcats began to make a run as time winded down, proceeding to score 10 straight points to cut the lead to 55-50 with 2:55 left in the game. The Knights were able to clinch the victory over the final three minutes with timely shots by senior guard Jacob Young and junior guard Ron Harper Jr. as well as three free throws made in the final minute of play.
Young’s 19 points and Harper Jr.’s 13 points led Rutgers while senior guard Geo Baker followed close behind with 12 points. Despite dealing with foul trouble that left him out most of the second half, junior center Myles Johnson led the Knights with six rebounds in the game. Sophomore guard Paul Mulcahy had a team-high five assists.
Northwestern was led by three double-digit scorers. Miller Kopp, Chase Audige and Ryan Young combined to score 43 points in the losing effort. Pete Nance led the Wildcats with nine rebounds. Nance also shared the team lead in assists for Northwestern alongside Boo Buie with three assists.
Rutgers ended the game shooting 48.9 percent from the field and 22.7 percent from three. At the free-throw line, the Knights shot 59.1 percent. On the glass, Rutgers held a narrow rebounding advantage at 29-28. Turnovers were comparable for both teams, with the Knights surrendering 18 to the Wildcats’ 20. Rutgers finished the game with four blocks.
Throughout the last two games, the Knights have given up a combined 93 points, the lowest total in 39 years. Rutgers will play Minnesota on Thursday night in Piscataway.
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