STATE COLLEGE, Pa. (AP) -- Danny Morrissey scored a career-high 24 points to lead Penn State to an easy 83-57 victory over Northwestern in the Big 10 opener for both teams on Wednesday.
Morrissey, whose previous career-high was 22 points against Minnesota nearly two years ago, started a second-half run with a 3-pointer that saw the Nittany Lions extend their 12-point halftime lead into a 26-point lead.
The largest lead of the game for Penn State (10-4 overall, 1-0 Big 10) was 34 points, when David Jackson went coast-to-coast for a layup with five minutes left in the game.
The Wildcats (10-4, 0-1) came into the contest ranked fourth in the country in scoring defense, allowing just 51.6 points per game, but Northwestern allowed a season-high 83 points by Penn State.
The Nittany Lions opened a double-digit first-half lead behind its 2-3 zone defense and some outstanding play from Morrissey. He scored 11 points in the opening half, including a steal and layup with three seconds left in the first half to put Penn State up 36-24 at the break.
The Nittany Lions played well on defense all game, holding the Wildcats without a field goal for almost 12 minutes in the second half.
Craig Moore led Northwestern with 18 points, coming on six 3-pointers.