WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. – One thing Trevion Williams and the other Purdue seniors had never done in their careers was beat Michigan.
Williams helped the team accomplish that on Saturday. Jaden Ivey scored 23 points and Williams added 19 to lead No. 4 Purdue to an 82-76 victory over Michigan.
“It means a lot to finally get it done," Williams said of snapping the five-game losing streak to the Wolverines.
Williams gave the Boilermakers a spark off the bench, hitting 7 of 8 shots. He also had eight rebounds and four steals.
“The last couple of games I got off to slow starts and things haven't been going my way,” he said. “When that happens I turn to God, I’m a religious person. We all deserve time to ourselves to reflect. As a senior, I was kind of taking things personal. When you feel you can give more to the team and then you're not able to do it because of little things like foul trouble or missing a shot. It was just a reality check for me.”
The Boilermakers (20-3, 9-3 Big Ten) held a 44-26 edge on points in the paint and a 32-22 edge in rebounds. Zach Edey contributed 13 points and a team-high nine rebounds for Purdue.
Hunter Dickinson led the Wolverines (11-9, 5-5) with 28 points, tying his career high. Dickinson, who hit 12 of 17 shots, has now scored 20 or more points in six of the last seven games. Devante’ Jones added 13 and Caleb Houstan 11 points for Michigan
Dickinson had nine career 3-pointers entering the game. He made 2 of 3.
“If he doesn’t put his foot on the line, he'd have three in the first half,” Purdue coach Matt Painter said. “If he’s making 3s, along with how tough he is inside, it’s a real tough cover.”
.Leading by one point, Purdue used a 10-0 run to expand its lead to 55-44 with 13:48 to go.
Michigan wasn’t finished, cutting the deficit to 76-72 on a 3-pointer by Jones with 2:19 to go, but could get no closer. The Wolverines were hurt by back-to-back turnovers.
“We need to take care of the ball better down the stretch because it's wining,” Dickinson said. “We have to do a better job executing the plays Coach (Juwan Howard) calls. Turning off the ball over leads to fast break opportunity for a team really good in. transition.”
Howard said it was frustrating to lose., but was pleased with the effort.
“They competed in a tough environment against a really good team,” he said. “I love how approach was from the start to finish.”
Ivey said he felt Purdue was able to wear down Michigan just enough.
“If we kept running them the whole game, their bigs would get tired,” Ivey said. “We got defensive rebounds, we were looking to push it, We did a great job taken what was given to us and executing the play.”
The Boilermakers led by as many as 12 points at 22-10 before settling for a 39-33 halftime lead.
It was Painter’s 400th victory as a coach, 375 at Purdue and 25 at Southern Illinois. Purdue also became the first team to reach 1,000 Big Ten wins.
Michigan: The Wolverines had been playing its best stretch, winning four of five games before falling short Saturday, Michigan is still searching for its first victory over a Top 25 victory this season when it gets another crack at Purdue on Thursday night. The game was originally scheduled for Jan. 11, but was postponed because of Michigan’s COVID-19 issues.
Purdue: The Boilermakers’ victory allowed them to remain just one game behind Illinois (10-2) in the Big Ten standings ahead of their game at Purdue Tuesday night.
No. 4 Purdue is poised to retain its ranking with its fifth consecutive victory, including Wednesday night’s victory at Minnesota.
Purdue: Hosts No. 18 Illinois on Tuesday night
Michigan: At Penn State on Tuesday