Indiana women’s basketball is set for its first of two rivalry games against Purdue, heading to West Lafayette tomorrow.
The Hoosiers are looking to push their winning streak against the Boilermakers to ten games. Indiana has taken 12 of the last 14 matchups in the all-time series.
Purdue hired Sharon Versyp as head coach just one season after she took the same job at Indiana. She’s been replaced by Katie Gearlds, another program alum who’s building for the future with some impressive freshmen and incoming recruits.
After a few years of Curt Miller, Indiana hired Purdue alum Teri Moren to take over the program. I’m sure you’re aware how that’s worked out.
This isn’t a matchup worth taking lightly and Indiana can’t get caught unaware. Let’s take a look at the Boilermakers:
Purdue is led in scoring by fifth-year guard Abbey Ellis, who averages 13.9 points per game. She hits 30.6% of her attempts from deep and is second on the team in long range attempts.
Ellis, being a fifth year, is a known commodity. At 5’6” she’s smaller than any guard on Indiana’s roster, giving up almost half a foot to the shortest member of the Hoosiers’ starting lineup.
Indiana can’t let her get comfortable on the arc because she’s capable of hot shooting performances. She also has enough speed to beat defenders off the ball. Her handle is good enough to get to the rim.
Jeanae Terry, another fifth year guard, runs Purdue’s offense. She’s not much of a scorer, averaging just 5.1 points per game, but is capable of getting into the double digits with assists. Her season highs in 3-point attempts and makes are one each. But at 5’11” she has size for the position, making her equal to Chloe Moore-McNeil.
Madison Layden is Purdue’s best shooter, hitting 48% of her attempts from deep and averaging 10.8 points per game.
Ellis would give up a good amount of size to either member of Indiana’s backcourt while Moore-McNeil will likely earn the Terry assignment on defense.
The matchup in the post
Purdue starts sixth-year forward Caitlyn Harper at the five, so she’ll earn the Mackenzie Holmes assignment on defense.
She averages 10.8 points per game in her role and has a running mate in freshman Mary Ashley Stevenson, who could help out on double-teams of Holmes down low. She’ll need to be ready for that to kick out to an open shooter.
At 6’3”, Harper matches Holmes size, but the latter just scored 32 against a taller, larger center against Minnesota.
We’ve already mentioned Stevenson, who gets a starting nod at the four, but Purdue has more than one valuable freshman on the roster this year.
Stevenson is a factor on offense for Purdue but has the size to rebound effectively. Indiana’s gonna need to keep her at bay on the glass.
Rashunda Jones averages 9.8 points off the bench and could at some point earn a starting nod given her scoring ability. The only thing separating her from being among the first five on the floor is Purdue’s experience at the 1-3.
She could bee an interesting matchup, but Indiana’s bench is a defense-first unit that learns the defensive system/the need to play with intensity before anything else. If she subs in early, it’ll be interesting to see what Moren does.
McKenna Layden, sister of Madison, is a bench piece that will likely get some run.