Through three Big Ten matches, Penn State conceded one goal. In Sunday’s 3-1 win, Indiana flexed its dominance in the box, netting two of its tallies off of headers. After neither team registered a shot in the first 10 minutes, Joris Ahlinvi and AJ Palazzolo found the back of the net 94 seconds apart in the first half to swing momentum to the Hoosiers on the road.
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Ahlinvi scored his first goal donning crimson and cream through the air. The senior was able to enter the box untouched on a delayed run, playing behind the ball before connecting with a cross into the lower left corner of the net.
Palazzolo got in on the action a few moments later. The 6-foot-1 defender’s size makes him a set-piece threat, but was left unmarked as he met a cross from Aidan Morris at the back post, powering the ball past the Nittany Lions keeper.
With Indiana in control, Spencer Glass added a third tally in the 24th minute to cushion the Hoosiers’ lead. Penn State got one back on a second-half strike from Aaron Molloy, but the deficit would not be made up.
The Nittany Lions came into the game holding a slight edge in the conference standings on account of playing an additional match. Indiana, sitting one point behind Penn State, earns a critical tiebreak should both teams remain at the top of table come November.
This result also keeps the Hoosiers’ chances at back-to-back Big Ten regular season titles in play. Penn State last won a regular season championship in 2013.
Up next, Indiana returns home for a non-conference matchup with No. 19 Kentucky. Penn State continues a three-game home stand and will look to rebound in its first loss since its opener when the Nittany Lions host Northwestern on Saturday.