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Gonzaga v Purdue

Source: Mike Mulholland / Getty

[Detroit, MI]- Top seeded Purdue’s time in the NCAA Tournament is not over yet.

The Boilermakers eliminated (5) Gonzaga 80-68 Friday, advancing to their first Elite Eight game since 2019.

The game started as a back-and-forth match between the Boilermakers and Bulldogs. Both teams exchanged the lead thirteen times in the first half. After making the first basket, Purdue gave up four unanswered to Gonzaga. Braden Smith would hit his first three pointer of the game, giving Purdue a 5-4 lead. However, the lead was short lived thanks to Anton Watson’s layup. After a foul on Ben Gregg, Zach Edey went to the Free Throw line and hit both shots to regain the lead.

Heading into the first media timeout, Purdue trailed 12-7. They cut the lead down to two before Nolan Hickman pushed it back to four. Mason Gillis brought the game back within one with a three pointer with 13:40 left in the first half.

Trailing 20-15 with 10:38 left in the half, Mason Gillis tied the game at 20-20. Late in the first half, Lance Jones gave Purdue the lead 37-36, the final lead change of the half. The halftime score was 40-36.

In the second half, Purdue shut the door on Gonzaga. The Boilermakers only allowed the Zags to come within one point once, forty-nine seconds into the second half. Purdue earned their largest lead of the game during this half with eighteen.

As a team, Purdue shot 57.1% from the floor, 45% at the three point line, and went 7-10 from the free throw line. The Boilermakers hauled in thirty-two rebounds, had twenty-four assists, and nine turnovers. For turnovers, Purdue is 26-0 when committing thirteen or less turnovers in a game.

For Gonzaga, they were held to 49.2% shooting, 31.6% from the three point line, and went 4-7 from the free throw line. They had twenty-five rebounds, fourteen assists, and six turnovers. Both teams scored eight points off the turnover.

Half of Purdue’s eighty points came within the paint, while Gonzaga only had twenty-six. Gonzaga committed fifteen fouls, while Purdue committed eleven.

Individually, Edey scored the most points for either team with twenty-seven. He also added fourteen rebounds, making him second all-time in the NCAA with 20+ point, 10+ rebound games. Braden Smith finished with fourteen points, fifteen assists, and eight rebounds.

In the Elite Eight game on Easter Sunday, Purdue will meet (2) Tennessee. Both teams have seen each other already this season, with Purdue beating the Vols 71-67 in November 2023. The last time the two met in the Tournament was in 2019, when Purdue eliminated Tennessee in the Sweet Sixteen round 99-94 in overtime.

Tipoff for Sunday’s Elite Eight matchup is at 2:20 PM Eastern.

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