WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. – JaJuan Johnson's jumper with 3 seconds left gave No. 14 Purdue a 63-62 victory over Penn State on Wednesday night.
Johnson, who finished with 25 points, was wide open after an inbounds pass and calmly drained an 18-footer from the right wing.
E'Twaun Moore added 16 points for Purdue (16-3, 5-1 Big Ten). He shot 7 for 15 from the field after shooting a combined 8 for 32 in losses at Minnesota and West Virginia. The Boilermakers nearly took a three-game losing streak into Saturday's showdown with Michigan State.
Jeff Brooks had 19 points and eight rebounds and David Jackson added 13 points for Penn State (10-8, 3-4). Talor Battle, the Big Ten's leading scorer, finished with 14 points on 5-for-15 shooting. He shot 6 for 22 in Purdue's 83-68 win over the Nittany Lions on Jan. 5.
Penn State has beaten ranked teams Michigan State and Illinois at home and lost 69-66 at No. 1 Ohio State on Saturday.
Purdue led 60-59 when Johnson was fouled in close with 46 seconds left. He made the first free throw, but missed the second, and Penn State rebounded.
Jackson drained a 3-pointer with 19 seconds left to give Penn State a 62-61 lead.
Moore drove and lost control of the ball, but Purdue retained possession with 5.4 seconds remaining.
Johnson's jumper gave Purdue a 63-62 lead. Penn State had to go the length of the court, and Purdue's Lewis Jackson intercepted the inbounds pass near midcourt and dribbled out the clock.
A 3-pointer by John Hart rattled in and gave Purdue a 15-8 lead. It was Hart's first basket since Dec. 4. He missed nine games after having surgery to repair a stress fracture in his right foot, then played 4 minutes on Sunday against West Virginia.
Moore made a basket, exciting a crowd that was well aware of his struggles. He followed that with consecutive 3-pointers, and his eight points in 1:30 gave Purdue a 23-10 lead.
Penn State rallied late in the first half, and a tip-in by Brooks at the buzzer cut Purdue's lead to 34-28. The Nittany Lions shot 55 percent from the field in the first half, but Purdue made 6 of 11 3-pointers and committed just one turnover.
Penn State finally took the lead early in the second half on a long jumper by Tim Frazier that bounced up, then in. The Nittany Lions led 37-34 before Johnson scored consecutive baskets to give Purdue the lead again.
Kelsey Barlow knocked the ball off Battle and out of bounds, then took advantage of the turnover with a two-handed dunk that gave Purdue a 44-41 lead.
Moore stole the ball from Battle to ignite a fast break, and this time, Barlow settled for a one-handed jam to push the lead to 52-47.
Penn State rallied, and a 3-pointer by David Jackson gave Penn State a 57-56 lead with 3:24 to play.
A jumper by D.J. Byrd, then a drive and dunk by Moore gave Purdue a 60-57 lead to set up the final 2 minutes.