Isaac Haas

Mathias, Haas lead No. 23 Purdue over Vermont 107-79

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WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. (AP) Dakota Mathias scored 17 points and Isaac Haas added 16 in Purdue’s 107-79 victory over Vermont on Sunday in a game in the Naismith Hall of Fame Tipoff.

Caleb Swanigan added 14 points and 13 rebounds, Vince Edwards scored 14 points, Rapheal Davis had 12 and Kendall Stephens scored 11 for Purdue (2-0).

Stephens and Haas scored 11 points each in a 60-point first half. Purdue’s 18 3-pointers is a school record, besting the 16 the Boilermakers made on Feb. 7, 1998, in a Big Ten victory at Ohio State.

Edwards made the record-breaking 3-pointer from the left wing with 8:27 remaining, giving Purdue a 91-64 lead.

The Boilermakers, who defeated North Carolina A&T 81-40 in their Friday night opener, made 10 of 19 3-point attempts in the first half against Vermont, with six players making at least one.

Through two games, the Boilermakers have made 30 3s.

Ernie Duncan led Vermont (0-2) with 18 points, and Trae Bell-Haynes added 17.

Purdue raced to a 17-4 lead only 5:40 into the game and was never seriously threatened, enjoying a 60-45 lead at the half. The Boilermakers made 17 of 31 field goal attempts (54.8 percent), including 52.6 percent from beyond the arc, in the first half.

A.J. Hammons, Purdue’s 7-foot senior center and leading returning scorer, was benched for a second consecutive game by coach Matt Painter, who has not given a reason why Hammons has not played. Hammons is neither injured nor in trouble with law enforcement. The benching is not expected to be prolonged.

The Boilermakers increased their lead to 68-52 on consecutive 3-pointers by Edwards and Swanigan with just over than 15 minutes remaining. A dunk by Swanigan and a 3-pointer from Mathias expanded the lead to 75-54 with 12:44 remaining, promoting a Vermont timeout.

TIP-INS

Vermont: Purdue honored Catamounts recruit Josh Speidel of Columbus, Indiana, in a touching pregame ceremony. Speidel suffered serious injuries in an automobile accident on Super Bowl Sunday and is still receiving therapy for a brain injury. He played AAU basketball with Purdue freshmen Ryan Cline and Grant Weatherford. … Duncan, a redshirt freshman is from Evansville, Indiana.

Purdue: Purdue has won eight consecutive home games, including the final six of 2014-15. … When North Carolina A&T was 0 of 15 from beyond the arc on Friday, it marked the first time since Dec. 4, 2010, at Alabama that an opponent failed to make at least one 3-pointer, a stretch of 161 games. … Purdue is 35-1 in November home games during Painter’s 11 seasons at his alma mater.

UP NEXT

Vermont: Hosts Quinnipiac on Wednesday.

Purdue: Hosts Incarnate Word on Wednesday.

Purdue tests out ultra-big line-up during scrimmage

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With Purdue not returning a lot of experienced players — only five scholarship players return from last year’s team — head coach Matt Painter is experimenting with unique line-ups to start the season.

One of those includes an ultra-big line-up that features 7-foot junior A.J. Hammons and 7-foot-2 freshman Isaac Haas playing together. According to Nathan Baird of the Lafayette Journal-Courier the duo showed some promise as they had interior passing for scores and made other plays.

A line-up of the two 7-footers would be one of the biggest front line’s college basketball has seen in some time.

Hammons and Haas were two of the standouts in yesterday’s scrimmage. The duo played against each other and together in different line-ups over three 10-minute periods of play.

I’m not sure if this is a long-term answer for Purdue and defensively the duo would be weak on the perimeter against smaller and quicker opponents on pick-and-rolls and perimeter jumpers.

But for a change-of-pace for a few minutes a game, it could be beneficial to the Boilermakers to slow the game down in the half-court and work the ball inside to the massive interior.

This will be something to monitor in preseason games when Purdue faces smaller opponents. If they go to the line-up and see it works, Painter could use it in small chunks during the season.