Walker-Kimbrough scores 41, No. 5 Maryland women beat Purdue
WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. (AP) Shatori Walker-Kimbrough has played hundreds of basketball games in her career- high school, Amateur Athletic Union and college. On Tuesday night, she came through with her highest scoring total.
Walker-Kimbrough scored a career-high 41 points - one point short of a school record - to lead No. 5 Maryland to an 87-67 victory over Purdue. Kristen Confroy and Brionna Jones each scored 13 points, and Malina Howard added 12 to help the Terrapins (20-2, 9-1 Big Ten) win their eighth straight.
''I came out aggressive tonight, and that set the tone,'' said Walker-Kimbrough, who was 17 of 21 from the field, including 16 of 17 from inside the 3-point arc. ''My teammates did a great job finding me for open shots. As for how I celebrate this one, just the victory in a tough place to play is good enough.''
The junior forward equaled the highest scoring total ever by a Boilermakers opponent, and topped her previous career-best of 26 on Nov. 18, 2015, against High Point. She broke her career high with a field goal with 4:51 remaining in the third quarter, which gave Maryland a 55-42 advantage.
Walker-Kimbrough had 35 points through three quarters, when the Terrapins led 65-54.
Ashley Morrissette scored 19 points to lead Purdue (16-6, 7-4).
The Boilermakers closed to 70-63 early in the fourth, but Jones' three-point play and Confroy's 3-pointer gave Maryland a 76-63 advantage with 4:48 remaining.
''This was a hard-fought victory against a Purdue team that plays with a lot of tenacity, but we had Shatori Walker-Kimbrough on our side hitting on all cylinders,'' Maryland coach Brenda Frese said.
Purdue coach Sharon Versyp is in her 16th season as a college head coach and says Walker-Kimbrough played one of the best games she ever has seen.
''When you make a few shots in a row, that basket begins to look bigger and bigger, and that is what happened tonight,'' Versyp said. ''She also is a very smart player.''
Purdue hurt its chances with 17 turnovers, which Maryland converted into 26 points.
''We changed defenses a lot, and we were able to force some turnovers, especially with our press,'' Frese said, ''Our defense really did a nice job locking down.''
Maryland led only 25-24 after a Purdue basket with 6:04 remaining in the second quarter, then finished the half on a 16-4 blitz, including nine points from Walker-Kimbrough, for a 41-28 advantage through 20 minutes.
Walker-Kimbrough shot 11 for 14 in the first half, including 11 for 12 from inside the arc, and 2 of 2 from the line for 24 points to go with two rebounds, three assists, two blocks and three steals.
The Terrapins shot 63 percent in the opening half (19 of 30) and outscored Purdue 14-4 as the result of 12 Boilermakers turnovers. Maryland finished shooting 65.5 percent (36 of 55), including 32 of 42 inside the 3-point line.
''Maryland is an aggressive team that will capitalize on every one of your mistakes,'' Versyp said. ''We cut it to seven early in the fourth quarter and then didn't make them pay.''
Keys led Purdue with eight first-half points also had five turnovers. She and fellow starting guard April Wilson turned it over nine times in the first 20 minutes.
Maryland also outrebounded the Boilermakers 15-11 during the first two quarters.
Walker-Kimbrough scored Maryland's first 11 points, helping the Terrapins take a 17-15 lead after one quarter, although the Boilermakers had an 11-4 run during the period's final 4:21.
Maryland: The Terrapins entered outscoring their first 21 opponents by an average margin of 29.5 points. ... Walker-Kimbrough came in shooting 55.1 percent from the field, including 58.7 percent from 3-point range, while averaging a team-leading 18 points per game, 10th in the Big Ten. ... Maryland improved to 7-0 in true road games and is 10-1 away from College Park, including neutral-site contests.
Purdue: The Boilermakers fell to 1-6 all-time against Maryland, including 0-4 in West Lafayette. ... Four of Purdue's next five are on the road, including a trip to Maryland on Feb. 11 ... The Boilermakers rank 12th in Big Ten scoring at 69.9 points but are fourth in conference scoring defense at 60.1 points. ... Wilson is averaging a team-best 15.9 points, ranking 20th in the league.
Walker-Kimbrough tied the Purdue opponent record set by former Minnesota standout Lindsay Whalen, who did it on Feb. 14, 2002, in Minneapolis. Walker-Kimbrough's 17 made field goals are the most ever against Purdue, breaking the record of 16 set by Northwestern's Anucha Browne on Feb. 12, 1984. in Evanston, Illinois.
TOUGH TO SURPASS
Maryland's starting five of Walker-Kimbrough, Confroy, Jones, Howard and Chloe Pavlech were a collective 34 of 48 from the field, 70.8 percent.
Maryland: Hosts Michigan State on Friday night.
Purdue: At Wisconsin on Monday night.