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Holiday Homecooking: Purdue 79, Incarnate Word 59.

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Boilermakers take care of business once again.

NCAA Basketball: Incarnate Word at Purdue Marc Lebryk-USA TODAY Sports

Purdue picks up their third win in a row after a 79-59 blowout victory of Incarnate Word Monday night.

For those wondering why Purdue would even play a 2-9 Incarnate Word team, they have a couple of Boilermakers on staff in Dr. Carson Cunningham at head coach and Carlito Labarda who was a student manager under Gene Keady with Purdue as well.

Although many of these games are not close whatsoever, you can still take a lot away from them about your squad and some things you need to work on. Tonight wasn’t extremely impressive against one of the worst teams in college basketball, but the Boilermakers got the job done handily.

One of the main things that stood out about Purdue’s performance was their three-point defense. Incarnate Word shot an impressive 44% (12-27) from distance and came into the game shooting 34% on the year. We have seen these struggles in recent seasons out of the Boilermakers, and if they want to make a Final Four run as expected, this is one of the main issues they will have to improve this drastically.

It seemed like Purdue knew they were going to run through Incarnate Word and weren’t all that juiced up for tonight. While that is understandable to an extent, the Boilermakers should not make that a habit or it could come back to bite them (as we saw in the Rutgers game).

Tonight was another solid performance by the big man duo of Zach Edey and Trevion Williams, Edey led the team in scoring with 13 points on 6-7 shooting, 9 rebounds, and 4 assists while Williams dropped 12 points on 5-7 shooting an added 8 rebounds as well. That comes as no surprise in a matchup with an inexperienced front line. They also played just 15 and 17 minutes tonight respectively.

The only other Boilermakers in double figures were Mason Gillis and Jaden Ivey. Gillis scored 10 points on 4-9 shooting which included two three-point connections. The redshirt sophomore has come on of late and has been one of the better pieces for Matt Painter. One could make the argument that he could be reinserted to the starting lineup in place of Caleb Furst who has gone through some growing pains after a hot start.

Jaden Ivey played another Jaden Ivey-type game, scoring 12 points and adding 5 rebounds and 4 assists in just 19 minutes tonight.

Nobody played more than 23 minutes tonight which was Caleb Furst. It was a game where everyone who played chipped in a little bit but didn’t have that dominant performer that they typically do.

While there are some things you can take from these non-conference matchups, you cannot put a large emphasis on them either. It is a fine line to make these cupcake games valuable for your program.

The Boilermakers now move to 11-1 on the season with one game left to play in 2021. Purdue will take on Nicholls State following a week and a half holiday break for the players and coaches.

The Colonels are 8-4 on the season and have faced a few good tests in the non-conference. They have played LSU, Baylor, TCU, and gave Wisconsin a scare before ultimately losing a close one, 68-71 on December 15th. This will be a team that the Boilermakers should not overlook as it could mean bad news for Purdue. The game will be on December 29th at 5:00 p.m. and be broadcast on BTN from inside Mackey Arena.