Tommy Luce is perfect!
Luce becomes the first four-year player in Purdue basketball history to never lose to Indiana, going 7-0 in his four year career.
That is about the prettiest thing you can say about this one as Purdue’s NCAA Tournament hopes stay alive for another day. The Boilers were far from great offense. in fact, they were quite atrocious and shot only 37.5% front he floor and a dismal 2 of 17 from three (11.8%). Fortunately, Indiana was worse.
A lot worse.
The Hoosiers started strong with a wealth of offensive rebounds and it looked like Trayce Jackson-Davis was going to dominate in the first five minutes. Then he completely ghosted the rest of the game. After three points, multiple rebounds, and a big assist in the first five minutes he barely did anything until a very late 3-point play. Indiana shot an atrocious 25.9% from the floor and Devonte Green was their only scorer in double figures with 11 points. Indiana led 7-2 just over four minutes in and TJD looked unstoppable. They then decided to not play offense the next 36 minutes.
This game reminded everyone of Purdue’s 48-46 rock fight win last year in Bloomington. Fortunately, Purdue had a critical 13-0 run around halftime to push a 3-point lead to 16 early in the second half. It then needed to hold on for dear life as Indiana did get it down to six with 14 seconds left.
Eric Hunter Jr. was great with 17 points and 7 rebounds. Trevion Williams was unstoppable inside with 19 points and 8 rebounds. Jahaad Proctor only had four points, but they were four very big points at a crucial time.
Again though, it wasn’t really that Purdue played well. It was more that Indiana played very, very poorly aside from the first five minutes.
A win is a win though. Barring a meeting in the Big Ten Tournament in Indianapolis Tommy’s place in history is secure. Purdue is, technically, still alive, but for the fifth straight game looked completely out of sync for most of the contest. If that happens Tuesday in Iowa City the Boilers will get boatraced, and they need to find a way to hit threes again.
Every win is beautiful.