MILWAUKEE (AP) — Jaden Ivey raced his way to 22 points and Zach Edey controlled the action inside, helping Purdue overpower Yale for a 78-56 victory in the first round of the NCAA Tournament on Friday.
Ivey, one of the fastest players in college basketball, went 3 for 6 from 3-point range and 7 for 9 at the free-throw line in 27 minutes. The 7-foot-4 Edey made the most of his size advantage against the Ivy League champions, finishing with 16 points and nine rebounds in 19 minutes.
With Ivey dashing up and down the court and Edey towering over the lane, No. 3 seed Purdue (28-7) won its NCAA opener for the fourth time in its last five tournaments. The lone exception occurred last year, when Purdue was upset by 13th-seeded North Texas in the first round.
The overtime loss to the Mean Green seemed like a distant memory as the Boilermakers pulled away from the 14th-seeded Bulldogs at the beginning of the second half. Next up is the winner of Virginia Tech-Texas in the second round of the East Region on Sunday.
Azar Swain scored 18 points on 8-for-19 shooting for Yale (19-12), which had won 11 of 13.
It was the first NCAA Tournament game for the Bulldogs since 2019. They won the Ivy’s regular-season title in 2020, but the postseason was canceled because of the pandemic. They didn’t play at all last season because the league canceled all sports due to COVID-19.
Led by Swain, who made each of his first five shots, Yale led 16-15 with 13:06 left in the first half. That’s when Ivey and the Boilermakers started to take over.
Ivey made two foul shots and a 3-pointer during a 10-0 spurt that put Purdue ahead to stay. Jalen Gabbidon’s driving layup got Yale within nine early in the second half, but the Boilermakers responded with a 17-2 run.
Sasha Stefanovic held his arms out in delight after his second straight 3-pointer rolled in for a 59-39 lead with 15:46 remaining. Mason Gillis scored and Caleb Furst connected on two foul shots to increase the advantage to 24 with 11:27 to go.
Furst finished with 10 points for Purdue, which improved to 25-0 this year when it scores at least 70 points.
Yale: Coach James Jones inserted EJ Jarvis into the starting lineup, likely looking for a bigger body to help with Purdue’s size. But it had little effect. The Bulldogs were outrebounded 42-33 and outscored 26-12 in the paint.
Purdue: The physical advantage for the Boilermakers showed at the line, where they went 27 for 33, compared with 6 for 11 for the Bulldogs.
Purdue is one of five teams nationally whose only losses this year were to NCAA Tournament teams, joining Gonzaga, Kentucky, Tennessee and Villanova.