The Mastodons had a tough weekend on the road facing off against Green Bay, losing 77-59 on Friday, followed by an 87-72 loss on Saturday. Purdue Fort Wayne struggled to gain any momentum through both games, and they were outscored in all four halves.
The Mastodons start player, Jarred Godfrey, was hounded all night on Friday. Green Bay did an excellent job of limiting him on the perimeter and not allowing easy baskets at the rim. He was out of sorts throughout the game, and struggled again with turnovers, coughing it up six times. He finished the game with six points, six rebounds and four steals on 3-9 from the field.
The Mastodons had a whopping 22 turnovers, which has become the biggest detriment to this team. They average 19.2 turnovers per game, which ranks dead last in Division 1 basketball. The amount of possessions they give up per game is simply too much to overcome. Their rebounding struggles continued as well, only grabbing 30 rebounds to Green Bay’s 37.
The normally sharpshooting Mastodons, shot 4-18 (22.2%) from deep. They were able to outscore Green Bay in the paint 42-36, led by Jalon Pipkins, who pitched in 11 points and three rebounds. But the shooting woes and turnovers haunted them all night, and didn’t allow them to get into any sort of rhythm.
Depth has become a major concern
Following the brutal loss on Friday, the offense played much better on Saturday, but the defense was picked apart by Green Bay. Jarred Godfrey and Jalon Pipkins led the way, with 15 points for the former, and 16 points for the latter. Those two are the only players on the team averaging double figures, while the lack of depth has become a glaring issue.
Between the two games, the bench was outscored 87-41. The Mastodons leading scorer off the bench is Demetric Horton, who averages 8.7 points per game and 4.6 rebounds per game. Outside of Horton, their bench has provided no production. Freshman, Jarvis Walker, is the second leading scorer of the bench, with 4.8 points per game.
Purdue Fort Wayne desperately needs a third option to step up on a consistent basis. Defenses are beginning to put a lot of pressure on Jarred Godfrey, by forcing him to give up the ball and allow others to make plays.
Saturdays loss was concerning, due to the fact the Mastodons struggled from beyond the arc again, shooting 5-17 (29.4%). What use to be their bread and butter, has become a focal point for opposing defenses to key in on. Defending the three-pointer was an issue all weekend as well, while Green Bay shot 9-21 (42.9%) on Friday and 10-23 (43.5%) on Saturday.
Purdue Fort Wayne fell to 6-7 on the season, and 5-7 in the Horizon League. They will have a chance to put these losses behind them and return home, where they are 4-3, and battle a tougher opponent in the Oakland Golden Grizzlies.