Purdue moved to 2-0 on the season after making 18 three-pointers against Vermont.
Just two days after playing 21 minutes and scoring zero points, Dakota Mathias led the Purdue Boilermakers (2-0) in scoring, with 17 points, as they dominated the Vermont Catamounts (0-2) 107-79.
The Boilermakers continued their offensive dominance, assisting on 24 of the 36 field goals and had six players score in double-digits. Oh, and let’s not forget about the team setting the school record for most three-pointers made in a single game. They made 18 three-pointers (18-of-36, 50 percent), besting the record of 16 set in 1998 against Ohio State.
Vermont played very well against the Boilers. While the game was never in question, their performance at least gave Purdue a challenge, unlike North Carolina A&T. Three players scored 15-plus points for the Catamounts and they shot 48.2 percent as a team.
With that said, it’s time to break down the Good, the Bad, and the Ugly of Purdue’s performance.
Caleb Swanigan turned in his second straight double-double of the season. He finished the game with 14 points, 13 rebounds, and two assists. Isaac Haas also played well down low with Swanigan, scoring 16 points while blocking two shots. Haas only played 19 minutes, which meant the Boilers played a good amount of small-ball against Vermont.
That small ball game helped Purdue score 18 three-pointers. Six players made at least one three, while four of them – Mathias (5), Vince Edwards (4), Kendall Stephens (3) and Ryan Cline (3) – made three or more. It was a shooting clinic the likes that have never been witnessed at Mackey Arena.
Purdue’s passing game is also on point this season. They assisted on 24 of the 36 field goals, bringing their two game total to 45 assists on 60 made field goals. That’s just insane, but the unselfishness of this team will be one of the big factors in them making a run in the NCAA Tournament.
Haas finished the game with only two rebounds. At 7-foot-2, Haas should have no problem getting rebounds, and didn’t against North Carolina A&T. It didn’t make a difference in this game, but when Purdue plays competition closer to their talent level, Haas’ ability to rebound will be huge and games like this will have to be non-existent.
Then again there were not a lot of rebounds in this game – 65 total – as both teams were shooting lights out; Purdue shot 55.4 percent and allowed Vermont to shoot 48.2 percent. This was after holding North Carolina A&T to 40 points on 24.1 percent shooting.
36 of the Catamounts 79 points came in the paint, which isn’t a huge surprise given Haas’ limited minutes and A.J. Hammons still riding the bench. Hammons missed his second straight game and head coach Matt Painter has not provided an explanation. Having Hammons roaming the paint when Haas sat down would have been a difference maker in this game, but it sounds like we won’t have much longer to wait for Hammons to make his season debut.
Honestly, nothing. Purdue played as close to a perfect game as one team can and they did so without arguably their best player.
Purdue’s performance against Vermont was one for the record books and it’s going to be fun to see if they can keep this offensive juggernaut going. The team dynamic may change a bit on the court when Hammons does return, but likely more for the better than worse.
The Boilermakers next game is against the Incarnate Word Cardinals on Nov. 18 at Mackey Arena.