IOWA CITY - Rebounds were hard to come by for the University of Iowa women's basketball team in its Big Ten home-opener as it lost to Purdue, 69-60, Sunday afternoon inside Carver-Hawkeye Arena. Purdue out-rebounded the Hawkeyes 40-33 including 18 offensive rebounds.
"We're not a good rebounding team," said Purdue head coach Sharon Versyp. "But we got to the loose balls and it shows our team the advantage you can have when you get the rebounds."
"They were aggressive and very physical defensively," said Iowa head coach Lisa Bluder. "Rebounding continues to be a problem for us."
The win marks the 300th Big Ten regular-season victory for the Boilermakers as they moved to 2-0 in conference play and 8-4 on the season. Iowa fell to 1-1 in Big Ten play and 8-5 overall.
Iowa was led by the trio of Kachine Alexander, Kristi Smith and Wendy Ausdemore. Smith paced the team with 16 points while Ausdemore scored 13. Alexander scored 15 points and grabbed eight rebounds.
Purdue was led by the inside tandem of Lindsay Wisdom-Hylton and Danielle Campbell. Wisdom-Hylton scored 17 points and grabbed seven rebounds while Campbell had a double-double with 15 points and 12 rebounds.
"Their inside play dominated against our inside play and we had no answer," said Bluder. "We acted like we were shocked by the aggressive play."
"I got my Christmas gift," said Versyp. "We can score down low and they were able to do that very effectively."
In a tightly contested first half, rebounds told the story as Purdue out-rebounded Iowa 23-16, including 10 offensive rebounds leading to four second-chance points for the Boilermakers.
"In the first half we really set the tone on the boards," said Versyp.
"We got within five and it's too bad we didn't take advantage of it," said Bluder. "We had four mental errors in a row."
Purdue would not look back as they held off the Hawkeyes and made free-throws down the stretch to leave Carver-Hawkeye Arena with a nine-point victory.
Iowa's next game is on the road at Indiana on Jan. 4 at 3:05 p.m.