Purdue shakes off rust to advance in March Madness tournament

Mar 22, 2018
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Conner Frankamp’s corner 3-pointer gave the Shockers just their second lead of the half and Landry Shamet’s layup pushed Wichita State’s lead to three at the break.

Purdue struggled offensively in the opening half against Fullerton, but Painter didn’t attribute that slow start to the early tip-off time.

Cal State Fullerton boasts one of the highest free-throw rates in the nation, averaging almost 24 attempts per game. Edwards now has 643 points this season, just three points behind Caleb Swanigan (646) for third on the Purdue sophomore scoring chart. He suffered the injury Friday falling on his elbow on a rebound attempt. “I have those feelings a lot as president of Cal State Fullerton, but that was a special moment indeed”.

It appeared 15th-seeded Cal State Fullerton might be capable of hanging with Purdue after the first half of Friday’s first-round NCAA Tournament game in Detroit. The most recent victory by a No. 15 seed over a No. 2 seed came in 2016 when Middle Tennessee State defeated Michigan State, 80-61.

“It was a matter of coming off nearly two weeks not playing”, said Haas, suffered a fractured elbow in the second half and is out for the rest of the tournament. “I just laid there for a second to try to assess myself. I kind of rolled over and that’s when I really felt my elbow”.

Haas crashed to the ground after grabbing an offensive rebound with 8:46 remaining in the game and the Boilermakers up 54-35.

“Probably the floor, honestly, ” he said.

This is absolutely devastating news for Purdue.

While Purdue is unsafe at all five positions, Taylor is most concerned with containing the Boilermakers’ frontcourt anchor Isaac Haas, who stands 7-foot-2 and averages 14.9 points per game and 5.6 rebounds per game.

When speaking to reporters after Friday’s game, Haas and coach Matt Painter said they were hopeful that Haas would be healthy enough to continue playing in the tournament. Matt Haarms will be called on to fill in at center for the remainder of the tournament, but there’s no doubt that losing Haas puts a dent in Purdue’s title hopes.

Free throws and rebounds propelled Purdue in the Boilermakers’ second-half outburst.

After reaching the Sweet 16 of last year’s NCAA Tournament, Purdue has bigger plans this time around. “Just getting our legs under us”.

The Titans (20-12) couldn’t generate much offence beyond junior guards Kyle Allman (21 points) and Kyle Ahmad (nine points). Purdue successfully covered the -20.5 spread, while the game went way under the total of 144.5 points.

“That was a key point of emphasis for us”, Taylor said. “He’s always that guy that we can count on”.

Purdue to lean on experience this time at NCAA Tournament

 

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