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November 22, 2012Marist usually thrives from the three-point line.
But on Thursday night, Purdue shut down the perimeter game of the Red Foxes, particularly as it built a big lead in the first half, and earned a 71-50 win in the first game of this week's Paradise Jam in the Virgin Islands. The victory was the fourth in as many games this season for the No. 14 Boilermakers.
Marist hit only five of their 27 three-point attempts, after missing all 13 of their attempts in the first.
"Our defense was very, very good," Coach Sharon Versyp said during her post-game radio interview. "They were 0-fer the first half, but I thought they'd probably hit some in the second. We played some zone, just to give them a different look because you have to chase them all over place and they're very hard to defend."
Purdue led 16-13 midway through the first half, but used a 23-6 run to jump out to a big lead. KK Houser, who led Purdue with 17 points and three assists, scored five during the stretch.
"I thought KK Houser had a great game," Versyp said. "The first half she just got us off to a great start."
Purdue led 39-19 at the break and extended to as many as 26, while Marist was never closer than 18. The cushion allowed Versyp to go to her bench early, which could help in days to come; Purdue plays Wake Forest on Friday, then No. 2 UConn Saturday, the third of its three games in three days.
Courtney Moses, who scored 14, played a team-high 28 minutes, as ten Boilers played eight minutes or more.
Forward Drey Mingo scored 13, while Sam Ostarello had nine rebounds. Purdue held a 39-23 edge on the boards.
The Boilermakers shot 54.3 percent from the floor.
"I thought we did better against their zone, and found some mismatches," Versyp said.
Meanwhile, Marist struggled to find its zone, shooting only 26.7 percent from the field, with 14 turnovers.
"We almost got ahead by 30, but really maintained that 20-point lead, which I really wanted to do," Versyp said.
"We got a lot of kids in to get them a lot of reps, a lot of confidence, because when you play three games in three days, you have to do a good job of winning and still feeling good about yourself. Our players really did a good job."