Cassidy Hardin ensured that the Purdue WBB team will be celebrating a victory during Christmas with a 10-2 record through 12 games in a win over Texas A&M in College Station. Hardin broke a tie with Texas A&M by splashing a 3-pointer with about 3 minutes left in the game. Hardin’s 3 led to a 7-0 run as Texas A&M couldn’t find its offense in five straight possessions leading to a a 59-53 win at A&M’s Reed Arena.
The Purdue offense was held to a season low 59 points. The game had a slow start as Purdue took a 27-22 halftime lead despite hitting only 5 of 16 field goals in each quarter. A&M made 8 of 29 shots (27.6%) in the first 20 minutes. Purdue had a rough time from the stripe too, hitting on only 7 of its 14 free-throw attempts.
The Aggie’s length gave Purdue fits trying to get the ball in the paint all game long. A&M scored seven straight points to tie the game at 47 forcing Coach Gearlds to take a time a timeout after A&M’s Jada Malone scored off an offensive rebound. Out of the timeout, Purdue senior forward Caitlyn Harper scored in the paint to quiet the Aggie crowd. A&M’s Kay Green then hit a jumper ahead of an expiring shot clock to tie the game for the final time. Out of the last media timeout, Hardin hit her 3-pointer and A&Ms Sydney Bowles rimmed out a 3-pointer on the next possession. Purdue then forced two Aggie turnovers and the Aggie’s missed 4 free throws in their final possessions.
Purdue had its struggles to close the game out as it missed two fields goals and two free throws in the final stretch. Purdue’s Caitlyn Harper had a game-high 15 points shooting 7-11 on her contested layup with 53 seconds left for a 54-49 lead. The two-possession lead would be enough for the Boilermakers to come out victorious. Hardin had 13 points and senior Abbey Ellis had 11 for the Boilers. Purdue had four different players hit a 3-pointer but ended up only 8-28 (28.6%) from deep.
The Boilers will now head on to face the Caitlin Clark led No. 13 Hawkeyes in Iowa City for their third Big Ten game on Tuesday. Clark leads the Power Five in Scoring. The game will tip-off at 9pm and will be streamed on the Big Ten Network.