WEST LAFAYETTE- AJ Hammons dominated Nebraska from start to finish on Saturday afternoon at Mackey Arena.
Hammons was asked if he thinks he demands the ball:
I wouldn’t say I demand the ball, but if I am open in the post, you should probably give me the ball.
Hammons led all players with 32 points, 11 rebounds and 3 blocks as the Purdue Boilermakers knocked off Nebraska, 89-74.
On this oddly warm January day, the Boilermakers hoped to stay on track against Nebraska. The 12-9 (4-4) Cornhuskers were visiting West Lafayette hoping to pull another upset similar to their win at Michigan State just 10 days ago. With a win, the Boilers end January on a three-game win streak before going into a daunting February schedule.
This was a must-win for Purdue, as in February they play all top-tier B1G teams, Maryland, Michigan State, Indiana and Michigan.
After a highly-competitive first half, the Boilers led 44 to 35.
AJ Hammons was dominant in the first half scoring 18 and corralling 4 rebounds. Isaac Haas was solid in the first half while giving Hammons a breather, scoring 11 points.3
Rapheal Davis locked up Shavon Shields in the first half, holding him to 3 points. Nebraska’s White III led the charge for the Cornhuskers scoring 11. While Purdue led at half, Nebraska stayed close despite foul trouble by making some tough shots around the rim.
At halftime, Purdue honored their 3-Peat basketball teams from 1994-1996.
Coach Keady stole the show with a short, but inspirational speech. Take a listen if you want to hear from Mr. Play Hard himself, he is the same man as he was when he was here:
Hammons picked up where he left off in the second half, scoring eight early points on four, poster dunks. Hammons took this game completely over early on and never let up from there. Halfway through the 2nd half the Boilers led 58 to 51. Purdue had their lead all the way up to 15 before the Huskers began to climb back into it, by cutting the lead to 7.
Davis found his stroke in the 2nd half as well, finishing with 17 points while playing lock-down defense on Nebraska’s Shavon Shields. While Nebraska gave a fight early on in the 2nd half, the Boilermaker’s depth and size proved to be too much.
The players and Coach Painter had some encouraging things to say after this dominating performance, with a big match up with Maryland looming, it was good to see the Old Gold & Black have a performance like they did this afternoon.