Saturday's Big Ten: Purdue juggles lineup, crushes Butler

By Michael Marot
Associated Press

Indianapolis — Zach Edey and Trevion Williams swapped roles for No. 3 Purdue on Saturday.

If anything, it made the Boilermakers even more dangerous.

Edey came off the bench for the first time this season, posted a double-double in the first half, and his presence helped open up the Boilermakers’ 3-pointers in a 77-48 rout over Butler at the Crossroads Classic.

Purdue guard Sasha Stefanovic (55) celebrates during the second half.

“We’ve got 10 guys that can start for us, but they want to finish more than anything,” coach Matt Painter said, explaining the move. “Zach has had some struggles starting the game. The way Trevion played (against) North Carolina State, that factor is the reason for the decision. Trevion’s ability to pass can maybe help a couple of those guys starting.”

Jaden Ivey took advantage by making all six 3-point attempts and finishing with 22 points. Edey wound up with 14 points, 11 rebounds and two blocks while Williams, a preseason All-American, had 10 points and six rebounds in his first start this season.

The lineup change came after the Boilermakers (10-1) endured a rough week — losing to Rutgers in their first game after climbing to No. 1 before needing overtime to beat North Carolina State. Then came a weeklong break for finals.

But instead of looking stale, Purdue remained focused. It reverted to its dominant early-season form and produced, perhaps, its most impressive victory all season.

“You’ve got to play well and we did not. They had a lot to do with that,” Bulldogs coach LaVall Jordan said. “They’ve cornered the market on elite size, and they’ve all gotten better and developed over time. It’s hard to keep them away from the basket.”

Butler (7-4) found out the hard way.

Despite getting 17 points from Bryce Golden and 11 from Jayden Taylor with 11, the Bulldogs didn’t have nearly enough to contend with their cross-state rival.

Jordan’s team was missing starting forward Bryce Nze (shoulder), swingman Bo Hodges (knee) and leading scorer Chuck Harris, who missed the game with a non-COVID-19-related illness. The result: A four-game winning streak ended.

It didn’t take Williams or his teammates long to exploit the size discrepancy. Williams opened the game with Purdue’s first two baskets and Edey scored six points in a 10-0 run that gave Purdue a 34-16 lead late in the first half.

Butler (7-4) never recovered and when the Bulldogs tried to make second-half adjustments, that didn’t work, either.

Ivey and Sasha Stefanovic strung together a 3-point barrage that extended the lead to as much as 36.

“Last week, I didn’t think we were able to bring a physical presence on defense,” Ivey said. “I feel like today we brought it, and we’re going to need that going into those Big Ten games. We just need to be tight defensively. I was confident today, taking rhythm shots. I’m just thankful for my teammates putting the ball in my hand.”

More Saturday games

Indiana 64, Notre Dame 56: Trayce Jackson-Davis scored 17 points with 12 rebounds, Parker Stewart added 12 points and Indiana rallied past Notre Dame at the final edition of the Crossroads Classic at Indianapolis.

Jackson-Davis, who has 26 career double-doubles and three this season, had a dunk and a pair of free throws to finish off an 12-3 surge for the Hooisers (9-2) as they broke away from a tie at 46, outscoring Notre Dame 18-10 over the final 8:11.

Race Thompson and Xavier Johnson each scored 11 for Indiana. Thompson, who was 4 for 4 from the field Saturday has made his last 10 shots.

Prentiss Hubb made a 3-pointer as the Fighting Irish (4-5) came from 10 points down into a 46-all tie after an 11-1 run. There were five lead changes in the first half but the second was all Hoosiers. Notre Dame made just two if its first nine shots after halftime as Indiana built a 10-point lead.

The Hoosiers had five blocked shots and five steals, scoring 16 points off 14 Notre Dame turnovers. Indiana had 16 assist on 21 baskets, Rob Phinisee leading with five.

Dane Goodwin led the Irish with 15 points and six rebounds, Blake Wesley added 14 points and Paul Atkinson notched his second double-double of the season with 11 points and 11 boards.

Jackson-Davis made a pair of free throws that kicked off a 15-3 run to close out the first half with Indiana scoring eight unanswered over the last 4:22 to grab a 30-27 halftime lead.

The Hoosiers had the best record of the all-Indiana colleges in the Crossroads Classic at 8-3, 5-1 against the Irish.

(At) Illinois 106, St. Francis (Pennsylvania) 48: Kofi Cockburn scored 21 points with 11 rebounds and Alfonso Plummer and Jacob Grandison combined for nine 3-pointers and 37 points.

The 7-foot, 285-pound Cockburn had no rival in the paint, making 9 of 11 shots with four dunks and bringing an intimidating defensive presence inside against the Red Storm (4-6). His double-double was the 34th in his career.

Plummer just missed going over 20 points for the seventh straight game after hitting five 3-pointers and scoring all of his points in the first half when the Fighting Illini (8-3) took a 24-point lead. Grandison hit four from the arc in scoring 18 and going over 1,000 points for his career.

The Illini were 18 of 34 from the arc and shot 66% percent overall, dominated the boards 44-27 and outscored the Red Flash 40-16 in the paint. The bench scored 34 points. Illinois went over 100 points since scoring 122 vs. North Carolina A&T in November 2020. This was the fifth straight game Illinois has made at least 11 3-pointers.

Ronell Giles Jr. scored 16 points, Myles Thompson 12 and Ramiir Dixon-Conover 10 for St. Francis, which shot only 26%.

Grandison hit two 3-pointers to open the second half and the Fighting Illini went on to lead by 34 by the first media timeout. Consecutive dunks by Cockburn began a 27-3 run that resulted in a 54-point lead with 51/2 minutes left.

Illinois decided this game early, shooting 70% and making 7 of 13 3-pointers in the first half. St. Francis hit three 3-pointers in the first two minutes but then made only two of its next 21 shots and were at 23% shooting at the break. Illinois finished the half by making nine of its final 10 shots, including four 3-pointers, to lead 47-23.

Illinois won for the sixth time in its last seven games after coming off a four-point loss to then-No. 11 Arizona. The Illini take on Missouri in St. Louis on Wednesday.

Iowa 95, Utah State 75: Sophomore Keegan Murray poured in a career-high 35 points and Iowa breezed to a 94-75 victory over Utah State in a neutral-site game at the Sanford Pentagon on Saturday night.

Murray knocked down 13 of 17 shots from the floor with two 3-pointers and seven rebounds for the Hawkeyes (8-3), who snapped a three-game losing streak. Murray came into the game second in the nation with a 22.2 scoring average — even after being held to a season-low nine points on 4-of-17 shooting in a loss to No. 17 Iowa State last time out.

Kris Murray — Keegan's twin brother — added 17 points off the bench for the Hawkeyes. Patrick McCaffery finished with 12 points, while Jordan Bohannon scored 11. Iowa shot 54.7% overall but just 30.8% from 3-point range. The Hawkeyes were 16 of 21 at the free-throw line and have now made 182 foul shots on the season. Their opponents have taken only 184 free throws.

Brandon Horvath paced the Aggies (8-4) with 18 points. Justin Bean finished with 17 points. Bean, who is second in the nation with seven double-doubles, was held to two rebounds after coming in with an 11.1 per game average.