ESTERO, Fla. (Purdue Sports) — Behind a barrage of nine 3-pointers, the Purdue women's basketball team rolled to a 67-47 win over Drake in the opening round of the Gulf Coast Showcase on Friday night. The Boilermakers shot 41% from the field to improve to 5-0 on the season.
The 3-point salvo matched the season high for the Boilermakers. Karissa McLaughlin and Cassidy Hardin each connected on a trio from long range. Purdue finished the night with a 47.4% clip (9-for-19) from downtown.
The Boilermakers took control of the game early with seven 3-pointers over the opening 20 minutes. Down 8-4 late in the first quarter, Kayana Traylor and Hardin hit from behind the arc to spur a 13-point swing, capped off by a McLaughlin 3-pointer early in the second quarter.
The streaky shooting continued into the second, as the Boilermakers outscored the Bulldogs (4-2) 29-14 over the frame, including five makes from behind the arc. Purdue took a 41-22 advantage into the break and never allowed Drake to pull closer than 13 points the rest of the way.
Defensively, the Boilermakers kept Drake's offense out of sync all night, holding the 20th-ranked offense well below its 82.2 points per game average. The Boilermakers forced 19 turnovers that turned into 25 points, while recording 11 steals. While Purdue stayed hot behind the arc, the Bulldogs managed just one 3-pointer on 19 attempts for the night.
McLaughlin led the way with 13 points, while Traylor (12), Dominique Oden (11) and Ae'Rianna Harris (11) also finished in double figures. Oden finished with a game-high six assists, one short of her career high. McLaughlin also chipped in five helpers.
Harris posted her second double-double of the season with 11 rebounds. Tamara Farquhar notched eight boards, including fur on the offensive end.
ON THE EDGE OF HISTORY
Ae'Rianna Harris continued to be a menace on the defensive end. The senior tallied four blocks to take her season tally to 15. Already the program's all-time blocks leader, Harris now stands at 299 career blocks, one away from being the fifth player in Big Ten history to join the elite 300-blocks club.
• The matchup on Friday night was the first meeting between the two clubs. Purdue is 146-55 in first-time meetings.
• Purdue is 5-0 for the 10th in program history.
• In two games after returning from injury, Cassidy Hardin has connected on five 3-pointers.
• The 29 points in the second quarter set the program history for most points in that frame.
• The Boilermakers assisted on 69.6% (16-of-23) of its made baskets on the night.
• For the first time this season, Purdue was on the wrong end of the rebounding battle 34-30.
• The Bulldogs were the first team Purdue faced this season that received votes in either of the national polls.
• Jenelle Grant scored her first points as a Boilermaker, finishing the night with six.
• Oden has scored in double figures in all five games this season.
Purdue will face Arizona State tomorrow night at 7:30 p.m. with a spot in the championship game on the line. The Sun Devils topped Maine 57-31 in their matchup on Friday.