Purdue Foregoes WNIT Bid, Finishes Season 19-15
Boilermakers set to focus on 2019-20
WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. – The Purdue women’s basketball team will forego an invitation to play in the 2019 Women’s National Invitational Tournament and finishes the 2018-19 season at 19-15 overall and 8-10 in Big Ten Conference play. Purdue head coach Sharon Versyp, the Boilermaker administration and the 2018-19 team collectively made the decision in favor of the health and overall welfare of their student-athletes, and are set to focus on preparing for the 2019-20 season.
The Boilermakers battled through injuries and a short bench over the last month of the season, with several individuals logging some of the highest minute-per-game totals in program history.
“There are a lot of factors that go into a decision like this one,” said Versyp. “It’s never an easy conclusion to reach. That being said, it’s in the best interest of our student-athletes, our staff and our athletic department to forego the invitation from a medical standpoint.”
Purdue hit a variety of statistical milestones and accomplishments in 2018-19, with impressive wins over Miami, Iowa and Michigan at Mackey Arena. The Boilermakers became just the third Big Ten program to record 400 all-time victories and led the conference in attendance with an average of 6,515 fans per game.
Junior Ae’Rianna Harris is a finalist for the Naismith Defensive Player of the Year award, to be announced in April, and broke the Boilermakers’ career blocked shots record with 284 in only three seasons. Sophomore Karissa McLaughlin tied Purdue’s season 3-point record, knocking down 88 on the year, while Dominique Oden finished her junior campaign ranked 18th in program history in scoring with 1,358 career points. Senior Abby Abel has also been named a finalist for the 2019 Wooden Citizenship Cup, which will be awarded April 25 in Atlanta.
The Boilermakers will get an early start on the 2019-20 season this summer, setting off on an international trip to Australia in August for several exhibition contests. Incoming freshmen Bria Harmon and Rickie Woltman and junior transfer Jenelle Grant will join the team for the trip and get their first action with the Old Gold & Black.