As Dom Torretto says, “Winning is winning, whether it’s by an inch or a mile.”
Today was by an inch.
Jaden Ivey’s late left handed drive and-1 gave the Boilers a 62-59 lead with less than 15 seconds, and Purdue elected to foul Fatts Russell rather than risk a game-tying three. Russell connected on both, then all hell broke loose. Purdue successfully inbounded with just over 8 seconds left, but the refs stopped the clock because of a clock issue even after calling a foul. Purdue’s next inbounds play, which should have been legal since it came after a made basket due tot he aforementioned clock issue, was ruled a turnover. Given a new life, Maryland got it in to Donta Scott, but he was blocked at the rim by Trevion Williams. in the scrum for the rebound Mason Gillis got the rebound and tossed it back to Tre, he kicked it forward down court as time expired.
Folks, this was Purdue’s fourth game in nine days. It was clearly gassed throughout and even trailed by 12 deep into the second half. Sasha Stefanovic and Eric Hunter Jr. then started hitting threes and Purdue got the lead with a 14-0 run. The final minutes weren’t pretty, but it was enough. Trevion Williams got some key baskets inside and Ivey, who was scoreless in the first half, had 11 in the second half including his game winner.
Winning is, indeed, winning, and this one counts the same in the standings as if Purdue would have won by 35.
This team needs a break, and hopefully it can rest up until Wednesday night at Northwestern, then it gets three days off before a suddenly dangerous home game vs. Rutgers.