Game Notes: No. 21/20 Purdue at Northwestern
January 8, 2014HOOSIER SPORTS 365
PURDUE SPORTS RELEASE
Tipoff:8 p.m. (ET) on Thursday, Jan. 9
Location: Welsh-Ryan Arena – Evanston, Ill.
Radio: Live on WBPE (95.3 BOB-FM) and purduesports.com with Tim Newton providing play-by-play.
The Series: Purdue leads the all-time series with Northwestern, 44-19, including a 19-12 mark in Evanston. The Boilermakers have won three straight over the Wildcats, and four of the last five, but Purdue has lost two of the last three in Evanston. Purdue won 21 straight matchups from 1994 to 2009, before a 60-58 Northwestern victory on Dec. 6, 2009.
The Rankings: Purdue is ranked 21st by the Associated Press and 19th in the ESPN/USA Today Division I Coaches’ Poll. Northwestern is unranked.
Just like the Boilermakers, Northwestern had its Monday Big Ten Conference matchup postponed, and enters Thursday night’s game with one loss in conference play. The Wildcats sit 10-4 on the year, led by freshman standout Nia Coffey who ranks among the conference’s best in scoring and rebounding. At 15.6 points per game she is the second-best scoring freshman in the conference and 11th-best in the nation, and her 8.8 rebounds are fourth overall in the Big Ten and eighth-best for a freshman nationally. Freshman Christen Inman and sophomores Maggie Lyon and Lauren Douglas have provided ample support for Coffey, all averaging double-figures scoring.
Putting Things Off
The Boilermakers’ Big Ten home opener, originally scheduled for Monday, Jan. 6, was postponed due to the snow storm in West Lafayette, in which the area got more than nine inches of snow and temperatures dropped to -20 degrees. No makeup date has been scheduled for the contest, which will be the only meeting of the year between the intrastate rivals.
Purdue senior KK Houser is ranked eighth in the conference in scoring at 16.0 points per game, and scored the third-most points of any individual in the opening night of conference play (26). Houser's 26 points and seven three-point field goals were both career highs.
The Boilermakers are 2-0 this season in games following losses, looking to bounce back from Thursday’s 89-78 defeat at Ohio State in both teams’ Big Ten Conference opener. Purdue is 8-2 over the last two seasons in games after losses.
Toeing the Lines
Purdue is thriving this season from behind lines, ranking among the nation’s best in free throw percentage and three-point percentage. The Boilermakers are ranked fourth in the nation from the charity stripe at 79.2 percent and 10th in the nation from behind the arc at 39.8 percent.