Purdue Women’s Basketball (19-10) is set for to return to the NCAA Tournament for the 27th time in program history and first since the 2017 edition on Thursday night when the 11th-seeded Boilermakers square off with 11th-seed St. John’s (22-8) in the Seattle 3 Region First Four at Value City Arena in Columbus, Ohio, at 7pm.
The winner of Thursday’s First Four showdown will take on No. 6 seed North Carolina on Saturday at 4pm. Site host and No. 3 seed Ohio State plays No. 14 James Madison at 1:30pm on Saturday.
Back in the Dance
Purdue has a 47-25 all-time record in March Madness. Led by Carolyn Peck, the Boilermakers won the 1999 national title, the only women’s basketball championship earned by a Big Ten program. In addition to the championship, Purdue has reached two title games (2001 loss to Notre Dame), three Final Fours, eight Elite Eights and 12 Sweet 16s. Six Boilermakers have been named to the Final Four All-Tournament Team, including 1999 Most Outstanding Player Ukari Figgs. Eighteen players have garnered NCAA Regional All-Tournament Team honors, with Katie Gearlds garnering the laurel in 2007.
• St. John’s edged Purdue 68-62 in the 2018 Paradise Jam, the lone prior matchup between the two clubs.
• Jeanae Terry is one of three players (Caitlin Clark – Iowa, Olivia Miles – Notre Dame) to average six points, rebounds and assists in the nation this season. Terry is just the 13th player since 2009 to record 225 rebounds, 180 assists and 60 steals in a season.
• The transfer portal has benefited the Boilermakers this season as the four players who started their careers elsewhere – Petree, Harper, Ellis and Terry – have accounted for 60% of the team’s scoring, 50% of rebounds, 62% of assists and 59% of steals.
• Abbey Ellis has made her last 19 free throws and 36 of her last 37 to reach 91% at the line on the year, ranking eighth nationally.
• Purdue is 17-0 when holding a team to 65 points or fewer this season, while going 2-10 when giving up 66 points or more.
• Cassidy Hardin will play her 142nd career game on Thursday, the most by any Purdue men’s or women’s player in history.
• Caitlyn Harper is 1-of-6 players in the Big Ten averaging over 10 points per game while shooting 55% or better from the field.