Rutgers knocks off No. 1 Purdue on Harper’s buzzer-beater

December 10, 2021 GMT
Fans gather on the court after Rutgers defeated Purdue 70-68 during an NCAA college basketball game in Piscataway, N.J., Thursday, Dec. 9, 2021. (AP Photo/Noah K. Murray)
Fans gather on the court after Rutgers defeated Purdue 70-68 during an NCAA college basketball game in Piscataway, N.J., Thursday, Dec. 9, 2021. (AP Photo/Noah K. Murray)

PISCATAWAY, N.J. (AP) — Ron Harper Jr. hit a buzzer-beater from just inside half court, and Rutgers shocked Purdue in its first-ever game as the nation’s No. 1 team, winning 70-68 on Thursday night.

Harper finished with 30 points on 10-of-15 shooting and 10 rebounds for the Scarlet Knights, a do-it-all performance that concluded with the most stunning shot of the young college hoops season. Rutgers (5-4, 1-1 Big Ten) beat the top-ranked team for the first time in program history.

Purdue had gone ahead 68-67 on a layup by Trevion Williams with 4 seconds left. With no timeouts, Rutgers inbounded the ball to Harper, who dribbled across the half-court line and let it fly from the big “R” logo. The ball went through as time expired and Rutgers fans stormed the court.

Williams scored 21 points off the bench for Purdue (8-1, 1-1 Big Ten), which was a unanimous No. 1 in this week’s AP Top 25, the program’s first time atop the poll. Its stay will be brief.

The lead changed hands three times in the final 13.1 seconds. Harper hit a turnaround jumper to put Rutgers ahead 67-66, its first lead since early in the second half.

NO. 23 SETON HALL 64, NO. 7 TEXAS 60

NEWARK, N.J. (AP) — Jared Rhoden scored 18 points and made the go-ahead basket as Seton Hall beat Texas for its second win this season over a top-10 team.

Cold-shooting Bryce Aiken scored five of his 10 points in the final minute, including a clutch 3-pointer, as the Pirates (8-1) won their fifth straight game. Seton Hall also has an impressive road win at then-No. 4 Michigan on Nov. 16.

Alexis Yetna added 12 points and 11 rebounds for Seton Hall in a game that was part of the annual Big East-Big 12 Battle. Myles Cale had 10 points and Tyrese Samuel came off the bench to grab 11 rebounds.

The Pirates held Texas (6-2) scoreless for 7:20 down the stretch and are off to their best start since opening 9-1 in 2017-18.

Tre Mitchell had season highs of 19 points and 11 rebounds for Texas, which had won five in a row. Foul-plagued Timmy Allen added 17 points and a season-best 12 rebounds.


SPOKANE, Wash. (AP) — Drew Timme scored 22 points, making all eight of his shots, and Gonzaga beat cold-shooting Merrimack 80-55.

Freshman center Chet Holmgren had 15 points and 15 rebounds, and Julian Strawther added 15 points for Gonzaga (8-2), which has won 57 consecutive home games — the longest streak in the nation and a program record.

Jordan Minor scored 17 points and Ziggy Reid had 16 for Merrimack (4-7), which is in the third season of its transition to Division I and was playing a ranked opponent for the first time.


AMES, Iowa (AP) — Izaiah Brockington had 29 points and 10 rebounds as Iowa State dominated rival Iowa.

Brockington made his first nine shots and finished 11 for 14 from the field to help the surprising Cyclones (9-0) remain undefeated after going 2-22 last season.

Tyrese Hunter added 11 points for Iowa State.

Jordan Bohannon scored 17 for the Hawkeyes (7-3), who shot 27% and have lost three in a row.


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