WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. (Purdue Sports) — The Purdue women's basketball team stormed back from a double-digit deficit in the second half of its road game at Michigan on Thursday night to have two opportunities to tie or take the lead in the final seconds. The Boilermakers were unable to convert on either chance and fell 66-63 to the Wolverines.
Down by as many as 12 in the final 20 minutes, the Boilermakers (15-9, 6-6) trimmed the lead down to one with 3:50 to play. After trading baskets with the Wolverines (15-7, 6-5), Purdue again brought the gap down to a point on a reverse layup from Cassidy Hardin with 1:35 to play.
The Boilermakers' last-ditch efforts came with 40 seconds left on a layup that was blocked and with less than two seconds remaining on a half-court heave that came up short.
Fatou Diagne and Lyndsey Whilby gave the Boilermakers sparks off the bench with 11 points each. Purdue shot 38.7% from the field and knocked down a season-high nine 3-pointers.
The Boilermakers trailed by three after the opening quarter, but Michigan opened a 15-point lead on the heels of a 15-3 run early in the second. Purdue battled back to close the gap down to eight at the break, knocking down five of their final six shots in the half.
Again, Michigan opened a double-digit lead in the third, only for the Boilermakers to storm back and close the frame on a 10-4 run. Karissa McLaughlin provided a major spark with a four-point play banked off the glass, which kickstarted the rally that never relented until the final seconds.
• The Boilermakers lead the all-time series against Michigan 43-21.
• After just four players found the score sheet against No. 18 Indiana, the Boilermakers put seven in the score column, with four reaching double figures.
• The two sides unleashed a barrage of 3-pointers in the opening 20 minutes with 11 triples, as Purdue went 5-of-10 from distance in the first half.
• Whilby went 3-for-5 from behind the arc to match her season high.
• The Boilermakers' 27 bench points were their second most this year.
• Michigan won the rebounding battle 44-30, but Purdue only surrendered 11 second-chance points on 17 offensive rebounds.
• Purdue has held 21 opponents under their season scoring average and 17 under their field-goal percentage tally.
• Diagne led the Boilermakers in rebounding and hit double figures in scoring for the first time in her career.
• Ae'Rianna Harris blocked a quartet of shots, moving her into fifth in Big Ten history with 358.
• Purdue committed just 11 turnovers, while turning 18 Michigan giveaways into 16 points.
The Boilermakers will return to Mackey Arena on Sunday to face Iowa at 2 p.m. The game will be the annual Beat Cancer Pinkout. Purdue will wear special pink Nike uniforms that will be auctioned off during the game.