No. 15 Purdue uses 20-0 run to get by Georgia State

No. 15 Purdue uses 20-0 run to get by Georgia State

(AP) Caleb Swanigan scored 18 points and No. 15 Purdue scored the final 20 points of the game to rally and beat Georgia State 64-56 on Friday night in the Cancun Challenge opener.

Trailing 56-44 with 7:08 to play, the Boilermakers (2-1) took over. Dakota Mathias hit two 3-pointers and P.J. Thompson one during the game-closing run.

Center Isaas Haas added 11 points for Purdue, and Jeremy Hollowell had 15 to lead Georgia State (1-2), which also got 13 points from D’Marcus Simonds.

Georgia State led 56-44 on a Malik Benlevi basket with 7:08 remaining, but Purdue pulled even at 56 on two Haas free throws with 3:57 remaining.

Coming off an emotional 79-76 loss to national champion and No. 3 Villanova on Monday night, the Boilermakers were flat throughout most of the game’s first 33 minutes before salvaging a victory with tenacious defense during the final seven minutes.

Hollowell had 13 points and three assists in the first half to help Georgia State to a 30-27 advantage.

Swanigan had 12 points and five rebounds at halftime, but no other Boilermakers scored more than four during the opening 20 minutes when taller Purdue was outrebounded, 18-15.

The Boilermakers stayed close by outscoring Georgia State 10-4 from the free throw line.

BIG PICTURE:

Georgia State: Coach Ron Hunter’s team has averaged 20 victories during his five seasons at the school, and the Panthers proved again Friday night why they will be a strong candidate for an NCAA tournament berth.

Purdue: While the Boilermakers finally wore Georgia State down, Purdue’s backcourt weaknesses were revealed, making only two of their first 18 attempts from 3-point range and failing to pound the ball inside effectively against the smaller Panthers.

UP NEXT:

Georgia State: The Panthers will play the NJIT on Tuesday in the Cancun Challenge.

Purdue: The Boilermakers head to Cancun, Mexico to play against Utah State.

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