Tracking the Boilermakers
Nov. 17, 2017

Men's Basketball
Saturday / 7 p.m. / Fairfield / BTN Plus
Women's Basketball
Saturday / 1 p.m. / Lamar / BTN Plus
Saturday / 3:30 p.m. / at Iowa / BTN
Swimming & Diving
Friday / 6 p.m. / Purdue Invitational / BTN Plus
Saturday / 6 p.m. / Purdue Invitational / BTN Plus
Saturday / 7 p.m. / at Michigan / BTN Plus
Saturday / 10 a.m. / at Navy Classic / FloWrestling

By Tom Schott

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - Men's basketball has been mighty impressive out of the gate.

The No. 19 Boilermakers are 3-0, averaging 100.7 points per game and winning by an average of 38.4 points. They are coming off an impressive 86-71 win at Marquette on Nov. 14 in the Gavitt Games. The 15-point victory was Purdue's largest on the road against a non-conference opponent since Dec. 9, 2008, at Ball State (68-39).

Tomorrow, Purdue plays host to Fairfield (2-0) out of the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference at 7 p.m. ET before traveling to the Bahamas for the Battle 4 Atlantis. The Boilermakers take on Tennessee on Nov. 22.

Senior forward Vincent Edwards is one of 50 players on the watch list for the Wooden Award, which is college basketball's most prestigious individual honor.

No `I' in Volleyball Team

How much of a team effort did volleyball display in its wins over No. 5 Minnesota and No. 10 Wisconsin last weekend?

Not one, but two Boilermakers earned national player of the week honors - redshirt junior outside hitter Sherridan Atkinson by and senior outside hitter Danielle Cuttino by ESPNW.

Atkinson, who also was named Big Ten Player of the Week, boasted a .364 attack percentage while averaging 4.43 kills, 1.29 blocks and 1.86 digs per set. Cuttino averaged 4.0 kills on the strength of a .312 hitting percentage.

Meanwhile, redshirt senior Ashley Evans was named Big Ten Setter of the Week for the second time this season. She set the offense to the tune of a .317 hitting percentage. Evans also has earned academic all-district honors for the third consecutive season.

Purdue defeated top-10 opponents on back-to-back days for the first time in school history and did so in front of sellout crowds on Belin Court at Holloway Gymnasium.

The Boilermakers, who moved up to No. 15 in the national rankings this week, won their fourth straight match Wednesday at Rutgers. They are 21-7 overall and 11-6 in the Big Ten - good for fifth place in the Big Ten standings - heading into tomorrow night's match at Michigan (18-11, 8-9).

A reminder that Purdue hosts Michigan on Wednesday, Nov. 22, not Saturday, Nov. 25, as originally scheduled. Match time is 7 p.m. The Boilermakers' regular-season finale is against Michigan State on Nov. 24. Tickets are available here.

Engineering Quarterbacks

Purdue is branded as an elite engineering school and as the Cradle of Quarterbacks.

But whoa. Redshirt sophomore Elijah Sindelar is one of just two FBS starting quarterbacks majoring in engineering. He is in electrical engineering with an emphasis in power and energy.

Last Saturday at Northwestern, Sindelar set career highs for passing attempts (60), completions (37) and yards (376). His 60 attempts were the most by a Boilermaker since Curtis Painter in 2007, while the 37 completions were the most since Joey Elliott in 2009.

Meanwhile, redshirt freshman wide receiver/backup quarterback Jared Sparks had a breakout performance with 11 receptions for 130 yards. He is the only No. 2 signal-caller in the country that is a regular contributor at another position. Sparks' 100-yard receiving game was the first by a Purdue player this season.

Purdue (4-6, 2-5 B1G) plays at Iowa (6-4, 4-3) tomorrow with kickoff set for 3:30 p.m. ET. The game will be televised by BTN. On paper, the game looks to be a defensive battle royal, as the Boilermakers rank tied for 19th nationally in total defense (369.6 yards per game) and the Hawkeyes 24th (370.3).

The Old Oaken Bucket Game against Indiana on Nov. 25 will begin at noon ET and be televised by ESPN2. Tickets are available here.

Benner Qualifies for NCAA Championships

Sophomore Emma Benner will run in the NCAA Cross Country Championships tomorrow at Tom Sawyer State Park in Louisville, Kentucky. The 6,000-meter race begins at 10:45 a.m. ET.

Benner, who finished 14th at the NCAA Great Lakes Regional on Nov. 10 with a time of 20:54.8, qualified for the second year in a row. She earned all-regional honors.

At the regional meet, the men's team took fifth, its best showing in more than 20 years. Sophomore Jaret Carpenter (ninth, 31:09.2) and freshman Curt Eckstein (15th, 31:23.8) led the way and were all-regional performers.

McLaughlin Big Ten Freshman of the Week

On the heels of her collegiate debut, Karissa McLaughlin earned Big Ten Women's Basketball Freshman of the Week honors.

At Central Michigan on Nov. 10, McLaughlin led the Boilermakers to a come-from-behind 79-69 win with 21 points, five assists and four steals. She started and played 31 minutes.

The Boilermakers (2-0) play host to Lamar (2-1) out of the Southland Conference at 1 p.m. ET tomorrow. Tickets are available here. Purdue then travels to Utah for a game Nov. 20 and continues on to Honolulu for the Rainbow Wahine Classic from Nov. 24 to 26, followed by a trip to Georgia Tech for the Big Ten/ACC Challenge on Nov. 30.

Swimming & Diving Hosting Prestigious Invitational

The esteemed Purdue Invitational got underway yesterday at the Morgan J. Burke Aquatic Center.

As many as 13 Olympians are expected to compete at the meet, which continues today and concludes tomorrow. Morning sessions begin at 10 a.m. ET and finals at 6 p.m. Admission is free.

Senior Kaersten Meitz eclipsed her own program record in the 500 freestyle twice (4:36.71 and 4:36.59) while winning the event. Junior Joe Cifelli (402.45) and sophomore Brandon Loschiavo (392.35) posted season-best scores while teaming up for a 1-2 finish in 1-meter diving.

For a full recap of yesterday's competition, click here.

Wrestling Wins 3 Duals in 1 Day

On Nov. 11, wrestling (3-0) won three duals, each in convincing fashion: LIU Post (49-0), No. 22 North Carolina (31-6) and Hofstra (33-7). Purdue took 27 of 30 bouts in the tripleheader in Clifton Park, New York.

The 49 points against LIU Post marked the first time the Boilermakers have put 40 or more points on the board since a 48-0 win over Ashland on Feb. 19, 2014. Moreover, the 49 points are the most scored since Nov. 17, 2012, when Purdue put 59 points on the board against both Loras and Calumet St. Joseph.

Redshirt seniors Jacob Morrissey (165 pounds) and Luke Welch (125 pounds) both reached the 50-win plateau for their career.

The Boilermakers, who are nationally ranked this week at No. 22, compete in the Navy Classic tomorrow in Annapolis, Maryland.


Freshman Zala Dovnik earned a third-place singles finish to lead women's tennis at the UNLV Invite last weekend. Another freshman, Ena Babic, won a consolation championship, as did the doubles team Dovnik and sophomore Caitlin Calkins. The Boilermakers' fall season is complete ... The 2018 baseball schedule has been released ... Men's basketball will play in the 2018 Gildan Charleston Classic in November ... Boilermaker legend Rick Mount (1968-70) will be enshrined in the National Collegiate Basketball Hall of Fame on Sunday in Kansas City, Missouri ... Recent Purdue Athletics hires include Jared Thompson as director of digital media and Charles Jischke as manager of photographic services ... Guests on this week's Purdue Athletics Podcast are volleyball junior Brooke Peters and wrestling head assistant coach Tyrel Todd ... Tracking the Boilermakers will return Dec. 1. Happy Thanksgiving.


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