Gillis breaks Mackey Arena record as No. 1 Purdue rolls past Penn State
WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. (AP) — Mason Gillis broke the Mackey Arena record by making nine 3-pointers and finished with a career-high 29 points Wednesday, leading No. 1 Purdue to an 80-60 rout over Penn State.
Gillis went 10 of 14 from the field and 9 of 12 from beyond the arc. In his first 2 1/2 seasons with Purdue, Gillis never made more than three 3s in a game or topped 14 points. Zach Edey added his 18th double-double of the season with 18 points and 13 rebounds.
The Big Ten-leading Boilermakers (22-1, 11-1) have won nine straight overall, six straight in the series, and are the only Power Five team with fewer than two losses this season.
Seth Lundy had 18 points to lead the Nittany Lions (14-8, 5-6) as coach Micah Shrewsberry fell to 0-4 against the team he worked for before taking the Penn State job.
Purdue looked like it would run away early when it used a 9-0 run to build a 23-13 lead. But Penn State scored the final five points of the first half to close to 35-29.
Then, after Jalen Pickett opened the second half with a layup, Gillis responded with three straight 3s to give Purdue a 44-31 lead. After Penn State called timeout, Gillis made a mid-range jumper and Ethan Morton followed that with another 3 to make it 49-31. The Nittany Lions never recovered as Purdue pulled away and extended the margin to as much as 26.
The Boilermakers finished with a season-high 14 3s as they held a 24th consecutive opponent to fewer than 70 points.
Penn State: Shrewsberry became the first assistant coach for Matt Painter to return to Mackey Arena as head coach of a different team. It's a game he'd probably rather forget. But the Nittany Lions have not been the same team at home and on the road this season and for an improving team, there are going to be some bumpy obstacles along the way.
Purdue: The Boilermakers again demonstrated why they are the nation's top-ranked team. Not only can they rely on the incredible inside presence of Edey, but when Purdue's supporting cast is lighting it up, they're almost unbeatable.
The Boilermakers left nothing to doubt after becoming the first Power Five team to earn unanimous No. 1 selections in consecutive years in 20 years. Now comes the hard part, though — a visit to their archrival, No. 21 Indiana, the Big Ten preseason favorite.
Shrewsberry and Painter both wore T-shirts to promote Project 44, an initiative to expand bone marrow registries. It honors the late Andrew Smith, who played on Butler's two Final Four teams when Shrewsberry was an assistant to Brad Stevens. Smith died in January 2016 at age 25 after a two-year battle with cancer. A bone marrow transplant gave Smith and his wife, Samantha, three additional months together.
Penn State: Completes a two-game road trip Sunday at Nebraska.
Purdue: Begins a stretch of three road trips in four games with perhaps the toughest of all — Saturday against the Hoosiers.
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