Jan. 12, 2012
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) - Brittany Rayburn's teammates kept telling her to shoot the ball.
By the end of the Purdue Boilermakers' 72-55 win over Minnesota on Thursday night, even some Gophers' fans were wanting her to hoist up shots.
Rayburn tied an NCAA women's record with 12 three-pointers and scored 38 points to help No. 17 Purdue (14-3, 4-0 Big Ten) cruise to its seventh straight win. Rayburn was 12 for 16, all from beyond the arc, and equaled the mark set by Louisiana State's Cornelia Gayden in 1995.
"That's the type of thing, you know, the exaggeration is you're throwing it in the ocean," Rayburn said. "It felt good every time it was coming off and the basket looked huge. Getting open shots, it's within the offense setting great screens to get me wide open, and those are easy shots to hit."
Minnesota had drawn within 57-50 with 5:52 remaining before Rayburn drilled another 3 - her 11th of the night to set a Big Ten record - when some Gophers' fans took notice she was one away from a record and starting cheering for her to shoot again. She obliged with a final three with just over a minute remaining to tie the record.
KK Houser added 10 points and 10 assists for the Boilermakers, with six of the assists coming on Rayburn threes.
"It was timing," Purdue coach Sharon Versyp said. "Every time they made a run, I called a play to set her up coming off the backside. Our post players make great screens, and you've got to have a passer who makes a great pass. As I always say, 'Passers make shooters."'
Rayburn had entered Thursday's game 1 for 9 on 3-pointers in Big Ten play. When Purdue beat Minnesota 57-53 in Indiana two weeks ago, Rayburn was 0 for 4 from three-point territory and shot 1 for 10 from the field.
Thursday was a different story.
"She's a great player, a great shooter," Gophers coach Pam Borton said. "I thought her teammates did a great job setting screens for her to get open and she just couldn't miss. She could not miss tonight."
With Rayburn knocking down her shots, the Big Ten's top defense did its part, creating 17 turnovers and holding Minnesota (10-8, 2-2) to 33 percent shooting.
Katie Loberg led Minnesota with 18 points. Freshman guard Rachel Banham, the conference player of the week after scoring 47 points in a pair of victories last week, was held to 11 points.