Photo by Sandra Dukes-USA TODAY Sports.
After a big 17 points and career-high 19 rebounds in Saturday's 69-66 overtime win against the Nebraska Cornhuskers, Purdue Boilermakers senior forward Sam Ostarello had an interview with Swish Appeal about the game, the season thus far, and how Drey Mingo inspires the team.
What was your mindset going into the game against Nebraska?
"We knew it was going to be a big road game for us, and we knew we had to take care of business on the road. But for me, it was trying (to win) the game in regulation and not overtime -- which we ended up playing them to (laughter). That was my mindset going in.
You had a very impressive stat line, 17 points and 19 rebounds, how do you feel about that type of performance?
"I was pretty pleased with it, but I’ve never been content or satisfied; the turnovers, I need to cut down on. Rebounding is my role on the team; it’s my job, that’s what I do. So I was going to get out there and hopefully get every board."
How do you feel about the start to the season?
"I think we’re really starting to gel. During the (early part) of the season, it’s kind of been, we would have great offensive games and then we would have really good defensive games and now we’re putting it altogether. I think that’s really special about this team, we know what we need to do to get the wins at the end of the night."
What does it say about your team that you all can go on the road and pull out two-overtime games?
"It just really shows our grit and our toughness, and how we battle with different teams. Two Big Ten games, two overtimes -- let’s not make it a habit (laughter), but it shows that we can finish; and we know exactly what we need to do and we execute and get it done.
In light of such a great start, what were some of your team’s goals going into the season?
"For us, our goals just consist of going out every game and playing our hardest -- playing Purdue Women’s basketball and giving all (that) we got. We set team goals (of winning) the Big Ten, it’s lofty but that’s what we expect to obtain."
As a teammate, how much has Drey Mingo been an inspiration to your team -- especially seeing her play at such a high level?
"It’s awesome! It shows her heart and how big it is. And how much she wants to be on the court, I think that’s the big thing with Drey, it’s all about heart."