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Seventh Ranked Purdue Pulls Away From Bellarmine

Bellarmine wins GLVC Tournament opener 79-62 over Drury
Bellarmine wins GLVC Tournament opener 79-62 over Drury
Published: Nov. 9, 2021 at 10:15 PM EST
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WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - The Bellarmine University men’s basketball team’s first David vs. Goliath matchup of the season went to the giant. On Tuesday night at sold-out Mackey Arena, No. 7 Purdue pulled away for good early in the second half en route to a 96-67 victory in the season opener.

Bellarmine (0-1), which is also set to face No. 1 Gonzaga and No. 2 UCLA, suffered its most lopsided loss and allowed its most points since entering Division I last season. Purdue (1-0) shot 50 percent, stroked 16 3-pointers, sank its first 17 free throws and maximized its superior size with a 42-22 rebounding advantage behind 7-foot-4 center Zach Edey.”I know their ranking and understand why they have that ranking,” Knights Coach Scott Davenport said. “They’re incredibly deep and very physical, and they do what they do really well.” Senior guards Dylan Penn and CJ Fleming tallied 14 points apiece for Bellarmine, which opened the season for the second straight year against a top-10 opponent after making its D1 debut against No. 6 Duke in 2020-21. Junior forward Sam DeVault chipped in eight points. Penn collected a team-high five assists, while junior forward Nick Thelen grabbed a team-best five rebounds.

Purdue led 50-37 at the intermission after sinking nine 3-pointers and all 13 of its free throws in the first half. Bellarmine had a lone turnover before the break and was producing quality shots, with Davenport noting the mood was upbeat at halftime. Bellarmine was within 12 at the 17:28 mark in the second half after a jumper by senior forward Ethan Claycomb, but the wheels fell off after that. The Knights followed by allowing an open 3-pointer, throwing a pass in the backcourt that got picked off for a dunk, committing an unforced turnover and fouling a 3-point shooter. Bellarmine never recovered from this sequence - a lot of it self-inflicted - as Purdue’s lead would continue to swell. ”We really, really got away from doing the things we’re taught to do - and (Purdue) deserves credit for that,” Davenport said. “From a teaching standpoint, this was a pretty good classroom tonight. ”Bellarmine plays at 8 p.m. (ET) Saturday at Murray State.

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