Originally posted on The Sports Bank  |  Last updated 1/28/12

In Tuesday’s 66-64 loss to Michigan, Purdue senior Robbie Hummel missed a big shot at the end of the game to send the Boilermakers to their second straight loss and third in the past four games.

(Guest post from Kevin Trahan)

On Saturday, he made sure he didn’t repeat that performance, sinking Northwestern with a tough floater with 8.1 seconds left en route to a 58-56 win.

“I thought it was a very interesting game, the kind of game where nobody could get good feel and put a stretch together to put the other team away,” Purdue coach Matt Painter said. “Obviously, anytime you have a guy like Hummel you want the ball in his hands to make a decision or make shots.”

The Wildcats dominated most of the stat sheet, out-shooting the Boilermakers 57 percent to 50 percent and out-rebounding them by 14. However, turnovers were key, as NU turned the ball over 16 times to Purdue’s five.

“Our ability to turn them over a little bit and not turn the ball over really balanced possessions,” Painter said. “Our ability to play in transition in second half really helped us.”

Although they didn’t turn the ball over, the Boilermakers struggled to get good looks on offense against the Cats’ 1-3-1 zone. However, they also played well defensively, shutting down NU’s “Princeton offense.” Because of NU’s confusing offensive and defensive styles, Painter went with a more experienced lineup.

“We have a lot of respect for what they do on offense and defense,” he said. “ We didn’t want to throw a young guy in there against the Princeton offense or the 1-3-1.”

With both teams struggling, offensively, the game came down to mistakes. NU played with a lot of energy — Painter credited the Cats with “hustle rebounds” — but turnovers sent them to a third straight loss.

“It was another tough loss for us,” NU coach Bill Carmody said. “I mean, the whole thing, the stat sheet, it comes down to turnovers.”

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