Purdue defense stifles Illinois
WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. (AP) _ Purdue’s aggressive defense registered nine tackles for loss, including five sacks, and the Boilermakers snapped a three-game losing streak on Saturday with a 29-10 victory against Illinois.
The victory, however, was costly for the Boilermakers (4-5, 2-3 Big Ten), who lost starting quarterback David Blaugh to a leg injury with 12:27 remaining after he was tackled by Illinois free safety Stanley Green. Blough was carted off the field and left the field in an ambulance. Blough completed 16 of 24 passes for 194 yards before he was injured.
Illinois (2-7, 0-6) lost its seventh consecutive game, six in a row in the Big Ten.
The Purdue victory snapped a streak of five consecutive games in this series in which the visiting team came away with a victory, including the Boilermakers’ 34-31 overtime victory last season in Champaign, Illinois.
The Boilermakers, who rushed for 209 yards on 44 carris, put this one away with 6:12 to play on Richie Worship’s 2-yard run after strong safety Jacob Thieneman’s interception of Jeff George at the Purdue 47.
Backup quarterback Elijah Sindelar threw a 3-yard touchdown pass to Cole Herdman with 11:37 to play 50 seconds after the Blough injury, capping a 12-play, 91-yard drive that extended the Purdue lead to 22-10 when a two-point conversion run failed.
The Boilermakers increased their lead to 16-10 with 3:47 remaining in the third quarter on J.D. Dellinger’s 30-yard field goal. David Blough’s 37-yard completion to Jarrett Burgess to the Illini 8-yard line set up Dellinger’s second field goal of the day.
Illinois: The Illini defense is competitive, but sustaining nine tackles for loss and committing nine penalties for 66 yards all but shut down the offense. Illinois’ defense tired in the second half, and the offense _ rotating between quarterbacks George and Cam Thomas _ was shut out during the final 31:06.
Purdue: The Boilermakers continue to display strong second-half defense and a solid running game, but the injury to Blough makes the future of the offense uncertain, although running backs Worship and Markell Jones have been impressive.
Illinois: Hosts Indiana at noon on Nov. 11.
Purdue: Plays at Northwestern at 7 p.m. on Nov. 11.