Purdue’s Defense Stifles Belmont in 73-62 Victory

by | Dec 30, 2018 | Headlines, RRSN News | 0 comments

Purdue’s Defense Stifles Belmont in 73-62 Victory

 

#BoilerNotes

  • Purdue closed out its non-conference slate with a 73-62 win over Belmont in front of a sold-out crowd of 14,804 at Mackey Arena. Purdue enters the teeth of Big Ten play with an 8-5 overall record.
  • Purdue finished non-conference play with three top-100 KenPom wins, one fewer than last year’s total of four.
  • Purdue made a season-low seven 3-pointers (tied with Ball State).
  • Purdue held Belmont almost 30 points below its season average in scoring with 62 points … it entered the game by averaging 89.5 points per game.
  • Purdue’s bench scored 35 points, the second-highest total of the season (Robert Morris – 37).
  • Purdue improved to 12-2 under Matt Painter in the first game back after the Holiday break.
  • Belmont set a school record for most 3-point attempts by an opponent (38).
  • Purdue won its 19th straight non-conference home game, the fourth-longest streak in Mackey Arena history … it marks the 28thtime (in 51 seasons) that Purdue has gone unbeaten in non-conference play at home and the ninth time in 15 seasons under Matt Painter.
  • Purdue has won 12 straight games when shooting a higher field goal percentage than its opponent.
  • Purdue closes the 2018 calendar year with a 25-10 record.
  • Carsen Edwards scored 24 points, his fifth straight game of at least 20 points and 11th 20-point game of the season … Edwards has scored at least 10 points in 33 straight games dating to last year … since the start of last year, Edwards has scored 1,022 points in 50 games, averaging 20.4 points per game … he moved into 25th on the school’s career scoring list (1,382 points) and into seventh on the career 3-pointers made list (196) … Edwards has made a 3-pointer in 25 straight games, tied for the second-longest streak in Purdue history.
  • Matt Haarms tallied 12 points, eight rebounds and three blocked shots for his best performance of the season … Haarms now has 99 career blocked shots in 50 career games.

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. – What at one time looked like a laugher turned interesting for Purdue. But style points don’t matter, as Purdue’s 73-62 win vs. Belmont was a thing of beauty for a Boilermaker squad that was looking for more mojo as it heads into Big Ten play.

The Boilers (8-5) looked like they were gonna cruise by a sneaky-good Belmont squad today in Mackey, leading by 23 points (55-32) with 10:30 left in the game. But that’s when the Bruins made a run … a big run … to cut Purdue’s lead to seven points (61-54) with 5:23 left in the game.

But credit some clutch free throw shooting from an unlikely source down the stretch to give the Boilers a cushion to victory. Nojel Eastern drained six freebies in a row in crunch time to keep Belmont at bay and help Purdue avoid an embarrassing meltdown loss. He had hit just 3-of-12 free throws this year (.250) but connected on 6-of-7 today.

Clutch.

Purdue’s free throw shooting loomed big all game, as the Boilers hit 18-of-24 (75 percent). Belmont also connected on 75 percent of its freebies but only shot four free throws all game.

Carsen Edwards was his usual excellent self, scoring a game-high 24 points. Edwards has been the team’s bellwether all season, averaging a Big Ten-high 26.0 points when the day dawned. That ranks No. 3 in the nation.

Matt Haarms chipped in with 12 points, eight rebounds and three blocks in one of his best efforts of the season. He helped the Purdue bench total 35 points today. Huge.

Belmont arrived in West Lafayette playing well, sporting a 9-1 record and coming off victories vs. UCLA and Western Kentucky.

Purdue was coming off an impressive 95-67 home win vs. Ohio. The 95 points were a season high, as the Boilers found their touch from long range by hitting 14 3-pointers. To back up that win with this effort vs. Belmont is a boon for Purdue, a program which has won 19 non-con home games in a row.

This game puts a bow on the Boilermakers’ non-conference schedule. Purdue made some strides and learned some things while playing outside of the league, but it let myriad opportunities to notch a marquee win slip away.

Purdue will open Big Ten play at home on January 3 vs. Iowa Then, the Boilers play the next two on the road at Michigan State and at Wisconsin.

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