The Boilermakers got off to a hotter-than-hot start and simply never looked back.
With visiting Hofstra already facing tough odds to make the game competitive, the proverbial writing was on the proverbial wall early on in this one after Hofstra declared star senior guard Aaron Estrada as out for the game. Purdue jumped out to a very early 20-2 lead. Matt Painter’s team ended up winning by by one point more.
Zach Edey led the way in what has already been a monster season for the center out of Toronto, tallying 23 points and 18 rebounds. He seemed to have occasional trouble finishing near the rim, but it’s certainly best to get those misses out of one’s system against a clearly lesser opponent.
Braden Smith looked like his typical pesky self on defense, but the main takeaway from tonight was the emergence of Trey Kaufman-Renn; coming into the season, Painter and company had high hopes for the redshirt freshman in terms of creating points off the bench and he got his first serious contribution against Hofstra, posting 13 points as the Boilermakers’ sixth man.
The game was never in question and Purdue certainly took their foot off the gas in the second half. In the waning minutes, it seemed as if the Boilermakers couldn’t finish at the rim despite great ball movement and penetration in the paint, so this one could have been a lot worse. But the fact that ball movement stayed excellent, that Purdue crashed the boards on both ends of the floor, and that Edey looks increasingly comfortable as the centerpiece of this offense...they’re all great signs before the heavy part of the conference slate begins next month.
Purdue returns to conference play on Saturday, December 10th, as the team travels to Lincoln to face the Nebraska Cornhuskers at 2:15 p.m. EST. The game will be broadcast on Big 10 Network.