Purdue center Zach Edey (15) blocks a shot by Gonzaga forward Ben Gregg (33) during the first half of the game on Monday in Honolulu. (AP Photo/Marco Garcia) (ASSOCIATED PRESS)
At halftime Monday, Gonzaga looked primed for an upset of No. 2 Purdue.
But Gonzaga’s shooters went cold as Purdue repeatedly looked to Zach Edey in the post to secure a 73-63 win in the first round of the Maui Invitational. Purdue rallied from a 35-30 halftime deficit and controlled the latter portion of the second half for a convincing win over the nation’s No. 11 team. The win sets up a top-10 showdown with No. 7 Tennessee on Tuesday.
Purdue opened the game with a 6-0 lead on three straight made buckets. Gonzaga then countered with a 14-0 run en route to a 20-12 lead, hitting three 3-pointers in the process. By halftime, the Bulldogs had connected on six of 19 3-point attempts while building a five-point lead. They wouldn’t hit another.
The Boilermakers opened the second half with a 10-4 run to retake a 40-39 lead in a game that was back-and-forth through most of the half. But Purdue outscored Gonzaga 17-10 in the final 6:46 to extend a 56-53 lead into a 10-point win. The Bulldogs missed all 13 of their second-half 3-point attempts while the Boilermakers dominated the post.
Edey finished with 25 points, 14 rebounds and three blocks after struggling from the field in a 4-of-11 first half. He shot 8-of-16 for the game. Gonzaga had no answer for the 7-foot-4 All-American while countering with 6-foot-9 junior forward Graham Ike as the primary presence in the post.
Purdue likewise struggled from long distance in a 4-for-17 effort. But it continually exploited its advantage in the paint on a 46.7% shooting effort from the field while doubling Gonzaga’s free-throw tally with 16 attempts at the line. Edey accounted for the majority of those free throws on a 9-for-10 effort.
Ike led Gonzaga with 14 points and seven rebounds as the Bulldogs seek a new identity after the departure of senior All-American Drew…
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Publish date : 2023-11-21 04:03:49
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