Purdue heads to Nebraska in a desperate need of a win after dropping their last six games. Yikes. The Boilers have not won since January 2nd to Rutgers and look to turn around the rest of the season starting tonight. Post-season hopes are all but gone but ending the season on a good note with momentum into next year is still important. Nine games remain until the BTT with four being in Mackey. I don’t think they’ll beat Indiana in Assembly, but they do have some chances to pick up some wins in the final stretch.
I spoke a few weeks ago about the frustrating blow out losses this team was having. And while I don’t really believe in moral victories, I will say the team that has showed up lately against #10 Indiana and #8 Ohio State shows a lot more promise. Which makes their losses to less caliber teams a little more frustrating.
The Boilers gave about everything they had against the Buckeyes on Sunday. After staying with OSU for majority of the game they found themselves in a 9-point deficit in the fourth quarter. Purdue rallied back to make it a one possession game by the end. Ohio State missed both free throws and Abbey Ellis heaved a three to try and tie it at the end of regulation, but it didn’t go down and Purdue lost 71-68.
Ellis was phenomenal from behind the arc hitting 4 3-pointers and leading the team with 14 points. Jeanae Terry was solid going for 8 points, 8 rebounds and 5 assists. Freshman Mary Ashley Stevenson and Rashunda Jones have really stepped into their roles as the season has gone on combining for 25 points and 10 rebounds. More impressively the Boilers out-rebounded OSU on the offensive glass and had four steals.
Nebraska is a very middle of the road team in the Big Ten sitting 7th with a 5-4 record in the conference. They are on a 2-game losing streak so they will also be hungry for a win, but the Boilers need to want this more. I feel like I’ve reiterated this every time I write about this team, but it really does come down to turnovers. They had 17 against Ohio State and it just allows the defense to get easy points. A couple less and they could’ve had an impressive win on their resume.
Coach Painter has often said ten turnovers is the limit, any more than that and you just allow the other team to win. Maybe Coach Gearlds needs to go full Coach Boone from Remember the Titans anytime they have more than ten turnovers. “How many feet are in a mile? How many feet are in a mile? 5,280 feet. You pick this ball up and run every one of them.