WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - The No. 12 Boilermakers escaped its first rivalry match of the year with Indiana with a 3-2 victory, thanks in part to a career night by junior Ariel Turner. Turner posted a career-high 28 kills and added 16 digs in the 25-13, 30-32, 25-23, 23-25, 15-6 win.
Turner had offensive help from senior Tiffany Fisher, who supplied 10 kills and freshman Val Nichol, who tallied nine putaways. Purdue outhit Indiana .202 to .138, including dominating offensive efforts in the first and fifth stanzas, while holding the Hoosiers to a .000 effort in each.
Redshirt senior Blair Bashen paced the Boilermaker defense with 25 digs, followed by senior Emily Ehlers (18), Turner (16) and redshirt sophomore Rachel Davis (8). Freshman Kierra Jones and redshirt sophomore Catherine Rebarchak put up four blocks apiece as Purdue outblocked the Hoosiers 10-9. The Boilermakers also served up four aces in the match, including two by Fisher.
The Boilermakers took the decisive fifth set 15-6 as Turner racked up six kills and Purdue hit at a .562 clip, making just one error in 16 swings. Turner tallied three kills and combined with junior Anna Drewry on a block as Purdue took a 5-1 lead in the set. Putaways by Fisher and redshirt sophomore Katie Griffin made it 7-2. Indiana scored three of the next four points to make it 8-5. Purdue rallied with kills by Jones and Griffin and a Hoosier net violation. An IU kill stopped the run and made it 11-5, but the Boilermakers closed out the match with four straight points, three on Turner terminations.
Purdue started the match by handing the Hoosiers a 25-13 Set 1 loss. The Boilermakers hit .414 to Indiana's .000 effort in the stanza as five different players tallied kills, led by Nichol's five. Purdue raced out to an 8-2 lead with help from a pair of Fisher blocks. IU cut the margin to five at 10-5, but the Boilermakers surged ahead, scoring nine of the next 11, to take a 19-7 lead. The Hoosiers pulled within 10 at 19-9, but would get no closer. With the score at 21-11, Nichol pounded down kills for three of the next four points to give Purdue its first shot at the set. Jones put the final nail in with a kill two serves later.
The Hoosiers snuck out a 32-30 win in Set 2, one which saw each team take four shots at the victory. Indiana led 4-1 in the early going and held a lead until Purdue scored four straight to turn an 8-5 deficit into a 9-8 advantage. The Purdue lead was shortlived as the Hoosiers scored seven of the next 10 to go up 15-12. The Boilermakers countered with a 7-3 run, including kills by Turner, Nichol and Fisher, to take back the lead at 19-18. Purdue pushed ahead by three at 23-20, forcing IU to burn both of its timeouts. The Hoosiers scored four straight out of the second break to get their first shot at the set at 24-23. A service error knotted the score at 24-24. Another IU service error and hitting error gave Purdue their first attempt at the set at 27-26. The Hoosiers thwarted that effort, but kills by Davis and Nichol gave the Boilermakers two more chances. Up 29-28, a controversial back row attack call, nullified what would have been set point for Purdue. A Rebarchak kill gave the Boilermakers another shot, but two Indiana kills and a net violation stole the set away for the Hoosiers.
The Boilermakers gutted out a 25-23 win in Set 3. Turner tallied eight kills in the set, which saw Purdue rally from a four point deficit and hold off a late Hoosier charge. The Boilermakers trailed 8-4 as errors piled up, but chipped away, eventually using a 4-0 run to capture a 12-11 lead. Turner downed three kills and Bashen served up an ace as Purdue rallied. Down 15-13 after a 4-1 Hoosier run, Purdue countered with kills by Davis, Griffin and Fisher. A kill by Davis and an ace by Fisher knotted the score at 18. The teams traded blows over the next six serves, leading to a 21-21 tie. A kill by Turner and an IU miscue made it 23-21, but a kill and Purdue error leveled the score again. A Hoosier service error and a hitting error finally sealed the Boilermaker win.
Indiana stayed in the match by capitalizing on Purdue miscues in the fourth set. The Hoosiers won 25-23 after leading from start to finish and holding the Boilermakers to just a .028 hitting effort. A 5-1 Purdue run provided one of the few highlights in the stanza. Trailing 9-4, the Boilermakers rallied as Turner put down two kills, IU made two mistakes and Jones and Rebarchak combined on a block. Indiana took a timeout, leading 10-9, and managed to hold Purdue at the bay out of the break, jumping ahead by four 11 times, the last at 24-20. The Boilermakers staved off three Hoosier set point attempts, but an Ivie Obeime kill ended the comeback try.
The No. 12 Boilermakers (17-3, 6-3 Big Ten) return to action at 7 p.m. Saturday, when they face off with No. 14 Minnesota. It is Dig Pink night at Belin Court and fans are encouraged to wear pink to support breast cancer awareness and bring canned goods to the match as part of the Cans for Cancer campaign. A silent auction will be held during the match and cash donations also will be taken, with all proceeds going to Komen for the Cure.