Purdue has struggled as of late and hoped to get off to a fast start and did just that. With the under 12 minute TV timeout, the Boilers were up 18-9. Isaac Haas had a great start in the post for the Boilers, accumulating 10 points early on. Vince Edwards also started hot having 11 points and 3 rebounds in the first half. Swanigan’s struggles continued into this game, with little scoring and struggling on defense to start. Purdue’s lead going into halftime was 38-25 and it would continue to grow from there.
The story of this game was Vince Edwards, he lead Purdue with 19 points. It was nice to see Vince be aggressive as well as get open shots as the offense was flowing much better this game. Penn State played a zone defense much less than other teams had been doing, but when they did switch to zone they were not very effective.
Penn State’s leading scorer, Brandon Taylor, lead all scorers with 21 points. The Senior continues his impressive season. Penn State struggled with the post, particularly dealing with the size of AJ Hammons, Caleb Swanigan and Isaac Haas, to go with Edwards’ great perimeter game this evening.
Haas lead the big men with 14 points for the Boilermakers, followed by 13 each from both AJ and Biggie. While Biggie had a nice stat line of 13 points and 9 rebounds, turnovers remained a large problem for him. He ended the game with 5 turnovers and against a good team, that won’t cut it. He struggles with decision making with the ball and sometimes forces his offense, leading to these crucial turnovers. Against a Maryland, Michigan State or IU, those would be costly.
Also, Rapheal Davis only scored 2 points again this evening, which seems to be a reoccurring theme. We will need him to score more points if we want to win the big time B1G games. His defense is still excellent, but we need him to find his offensive rhythm sooner, rather than later.
Coach Painter seemed to cut the rotation down quite a bit this evening. Generally speaking, Stephens, Mathias and Cline get close to similar minutes. Well that was not the story tonight, as Mathias got 20 minutes, Stephens got 9 and Cline received 10. This is deserved as Mathias has worked his tail off on the defensive end and is by far the hottest of the trio when considering shooting from the outside.
Overall, it was what a top 25 team should do to a lower tier team in the B1G. Hopefully Purdue can build on this and win out in the month of January before a tough slate of games in February come about.
I would also like to thank Travis Baugh & Clayton Duffy for allowing me to co-host the Boiler Radio Show with Travis before the game! Make sure you listen to these guys before every home Purdue Basketball game at BoilerRadio.com