WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. (Purdue Sports) — The Purdue women's basketball team improved to 2-0 in Big Ten Conference play on Tuesday afternoon at Mackey Arena with a 72-61 win over Wisconsin. Karissa McLaughlin and Dominique Oden shared scoring duties in each half to combine for 42 points.
McLaughlin seemingly could not miss at the start with 11 points in the opening 10 minutes, including Purdue's first eight points of the game. The junior went 4-of-6 from the field with a trio of makes from distance in the opening frame, eventually tallying 16 points for the first half. McLaughlin finished the afternoon with 22 points on 7-of-12 shooting and five triples.
After just four points in the first half, all of which came in a span of four seconds – fastbreak layup, steal on the inbounds pass and a layup, Oden quickly joined the fray in the second half with seven points in the third quarter. The senior then dropped nine points in the fourth on 4-of-5 field goals to help the Boilermakers (11-3, 2-0) keep Wisconsin (8-5, 0-2) in check.
Purdue's big run of the game came in the second quarter. Following a six-point run by the Badgers, the Boilermakers spun together a 14-2 streak to open a nine-point lead. Wisconsin could only shave the gap to six in the fourth quarter, before Purdue sealed the game with a 6-for-6 mark at the line.
ANOTHER RECORD FOR RI
Ae'Rianna Harris added another milestone to her illustrious career Tuesday, taking over the all-time defensive rebounds record at Purdue. The senior entered the day just one board shy of Lindsay Wisdom-Hylton's mark of 665 defensive rebounds. The record-setting rebound came with 4:08 to play in the first quarter. Harris, already the program's all-time blocks leader, continues to close in on Wisdom-Hylton's all-time rebounds mark of 968, needing 32 more rebounds after Tuesday.
Head coach Sharon Versyp on the play of Oden and McLaughlin…
Anytime a player can kind of takeover a game and start knocking down, it takes pressure off our team. It's nice when one player can score in bunches. The teammates are always whomever that may be. The first half, Karissa got us off to a great start. Dominique did her pull up jumpshots in the second half and hit that big 3-pointer.
Versyp on finding a way to win…
It's a good sign. We didn't want Wisconsin to shoot the three. We took away the three. Their strength is down low, but it's their 3-point game that's helped them win games. Today, we wanted to make sure we took away the three, and we did.
Karissa McLaughlin on where the team is at after two games in the Big Ten…
I really love how we're playing together. We're pushing the ball. Our defense looks great right now. We need to rebound better. Once we get that down, we're going to look even better. We're getting our post players the shots that they need. I just love how confident we're playing right now.
• Purdue owns a 52-20 all-time series lead over Wisconsin.
• The Boilermakers have won five straight Big Ten Conference home openers.
• Tamara Farquhar and Harris finished with 10 and 14 points, respectively.
• The lone starter not in double figures was Kayana Traylor, who dished out a team-high six assists.
• Purdue notched 15 assists to 12 turnovers, the team's second-lowest turnover tally this season.
• For the fourth straight game, the Boilermakers shot above 40% from the field, recording a 48.1% clip.
• Harris' five blocks gave her 330 for her career, a mere 19 short of Joe Barry Carroll's Purdue record.
• The five blocks marked her 17th career outing with at least five rejections.
• Wisconsin entered the game averaging 31.3% from 3-point range. On Tuesday, the Boilermakers held the Badgers to 18.8% from long range on 3-of-16.
• Purdue closes 2019 with a 20-13 record. For the decade, Purdue finished 212-133.
• The Boilermakers improved to 7-0 at Mackey Arena this season.
The Boilermakers will play their first game in 2020 on Jan. 5 against Rutgers at Mackey Arena. Tip is set for noon on the Big Ten Network. Sunday will be the Boilermaker Kids Club Game, where all members receive two free tickets, Special Olympics Day and Boilerpalooza. There will be a fan fest in Holloway Gymnasium starting at 11 a.m.