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Purdue Women's Basketball Suffers First Loss

Purdue Women's Basketball team is 1-1 heading into their match-up with Toledo Sunday.

Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

Purdue opened their season in Muncie against the Ball State Cardinals. Purdue came out on top 66-60 in a tough game. Purdue was outshot by the Cardinals but were able to make up the difference by getting to the free throw line and scoring off of turnovers.

Purdue only trailed briefly at the start of the game before building a 12 point lead. Up 5-6 the Boilers went on a 13-2 run to get their first 12 point lead with 11:58 left. Purdue led by 12 again with 2:26 left in the half. The Boilermakers were up 30-23 at the break.

Purdue was slow out of the gate in the second half and Ball State made them pay for it. The Cardinals went on a 16-4 run over the first eight minutes of the half to take the lead. Purdue shot 2-10 to open the half meanwhile BSU shot 5-8. Purdue was able to answer with a run over their own. Bridget Perry scored seven points for the Boilers in a 13-3 run that helped them recapture their lead. Ball State cut the margin to one three times before the final horn but they never were able to overtake Purdue. Purdue led by as much as seven down the stretch. A Cardinal three-pointer made the score 64-60 with six seconds left but it was too little too late for Ball State.

Ashley Morrissette led the Boilers in scoring with 16 points. Whitney Bays put in 14 in addition to pulling down a team leading nine rebounds. Freshman Andreona Keys had 12 points and was perfect from the line, 6-6. Bridget Perry finished with 10 points. Liza Clemons had eight points and seven rebounds. The Boilers had assists on 13 of their 17 field goals; six different players had two assists. Purdue shot 34% from the field and 65% from the line.

Ball State shot 43.8% from field and 73.3% from the line. Purdue had more free-throw makes than the Cardinals did attempts, 26-15. Purdue ended the night with 13 turnovers. Ball State committed 18 turnovers which Purdue was able to turn into 18 points.

In the polls released on November 17 Purdue was tied at 24 with three other teams in the AP Poll.

Purdue battled hard in their home season opener but weren't able to top the Green Bay Phoenix. The Boilers fell 81-78 in double overtime.

Purdue scored first and enjoyed the lead for the first eight minutes of the game. A Green Bay jumper gave the Phoenix a 13-12 lead. It wasn't long though before Purdue reclaimed their lead with a Clemons layup that made the score read 19-18. Purdue held on to the lead through the finish of the half. Green Bay staged a 7-3 run to end the half down 32-31.

The Boilers maintained the lead till the last 1:11 left in the second half. Bridget Perry opened the half with a layup and three-pointer to temporarily give the Boilers a little more breathing room. With 12:12 left in the half Green Bay cut the Purdue lead to one. The Boilers responded with a 10-1 run to go up 10 with 8:48 left. Green Bay used four three-point field goals to help close the gap down the stretch. They struck with their last one with 1:11 left to tie the game at 63-63. April Wilson missed a jumper with 35 seconds left. Green Bay repaid the favor missing a three-pointer with eight seconds left. Purdue grabbed the rebound but weren't able to get a shot up before the horn.

The two teams traded blows in the first overtime. Green Bay had the biggest lead, three, with 1:40 left. Purdue missed three field goals and three free throws before Ashley Morrissette hit two free throws to cut Green Bay's lead to one. Purdue sent Green Bay to the line and they only hit one free throw. An April Wilson turnover gave the ball back to Green Bay, but Liza Clemons was able to steal the inbounds and make a pass to Wilson to score and tie the game at 71. Wilson was fouled on play but wasn't able to make her free throw.

Purdue was up 75-74 when Green Bay struck with a three-pointer to take the lead for the last time. With 22 seconds left Purdue fouled and Green Bay hit both free throws. Ashley Morrissette answered for the Boilers with a trey to draw them within one. When Purdue fouled again Green Bay hit both free throws with nine seconds left. Morrissette's three-point attempt with two seconds left missed and Purdue lost 81-78.

Ashley Morrissette led Purdue with 23 points in addition to six assists and three steals. Whitney Bays had equal points and rebounds, 18; Bays also had four steals. Bridget Perry poured in 12 and dished five assists. Liza Clemons also had 12 points to go with six rebounds and three blocked shots. April Wilson struggled in her first game back scoring only six points and committing six turnovers. Wilson did grab five rebounds and dish four assists though.

The Boilers shot 39.7% from the floor, 46.7% from three-point range, and 65.4% from the free throw line. Sadly Purdue's biggest shooting struggles were during the overtime periods.

Sunday afternoon Purdue hosts Toledo (1-1) at 2 P.M. Last season Purdue beat the Rockets 81-79. This season Toledo has beaten St. Bonaventure and lost to Cleveland State. The Rockets are young this season; they return two starters but only have four upperclassmen on the roster. Sophie Reecher averages a double-double with 10 and 10. Janice Manakana leads the Rockets with 11.5 ppg. Toledo is picked to finish 4th in the MAC West. Head coach Tricia Cullop is Purdue alum. She graduated in 1993 and was a four year letter winner on the women's basketball team.