WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. – The Purdue women’s basketball team got the 2015-16 season underway Monday in Mackey Arena, posting a 78-37 exhibition victory over visiting Marian University. Junior Bridget Perry paced the Boilermakers with a double-double, scoring 17 points and grabbing 13 rebounds, while senior April Wilson was just shy, finishing with 15 points, nine assists and four steals.
“It felt nice to put the uniforms on and play in front of a crown,” said Purdue head coach Sharon Versyp. “We’ve been working toward this for about 250 days now, so it was great to have a dress rehearsal and get the jitters out.”
The first quarter saw some of those jitters from the Boilermakers as they converted only four-of-14 from the floor and crawled out to a 17-10 edge over the visiting Knights. The lead came on the strength of a nine-of-13 shooting performance at the free throw line, and outrebounding Marian, 15-5. Perry had more than half of the first-quarter scoring, finishing the opening frame with nine points and five boards.
Shots started falling in the second period as the Boilermakers hit five-of-six in a four-minute stretch to extend the lead to 28-14, capped by an inside-out three-pointer from senior Hayden Hamby, who finished with eight points on the afternoon. Again Purdue dominated the glass in the period, but seven turnovers hampered the increased offensive output and the Boilermakers took a 36-20 lead into the half.
Wilson struggled in the first half, but came out roaring in the third quarter with six points and four assists in the frame. During a four-minute stretch she had a hand in 14 straight points, pushing Purdue’s lead out to 52-26 with 12 minutes left in the game. Freshman Nora Kiesler introduced herself to the Mackey crowd in the second half as well, sinking four straight buckets at the end of the third en route to 10 points and five rebounds for the game.
The Boilermakers’ scoring output continued in the fourth and final quarter, putting up a balanced 22 points behind Wilson, sophomore Justine Hall and freshman Tiara Murphy. Wilson canned a pair of threes, while Hall and Murphy each sunk one, tallying six, five and five points, respectively. While converting eight-of-14 (.571) from the floor, Purdue committed just two turnovers in the final period.
Joining Wilson and Perry in double figures were Kiesler and sophomore Andreona Keys, who played a strong floor game for the Boilermakers. Keys finished three-of-five from the floor and six-for-six from the free throw line for 12 points, adding three rebounds and a pair of steals to her totals. Senior Torrie Thornton and sophomore Erica Moore added six and five rebounds, respectively, while Hall finished with seven points and three boards.
The Boilermakers open regular-season play Monday, Nov. 16, hosting Jacksonville State University in Mackey Arena at 7 p.m. ET.