Hoosiers Fall Short at No. 17/18 Wisconsin, 69-60
Jan. 20, 2011
MADISON, Wis. - The Indiana men's basketball team led No. 17/18 Wisconsin at halftime and traded the lead with the Badgers for much of the second half, but fell short, 69-60, in Madison on Thursday, Jan. 20.
Sophomore Jordan Hulls led Indiana with 16 points, two assists and two steals. Junior Verdell Jones III became the 42nd player in Indiana basketball history to score 1,000 career points when he put in a layup at 18:54 in the second half. He ended up with 15 points, six rebounds, one assist and one steal on the night. Sophomore Christian Watford tallied 10 points and four rebounds.
"Jordan was very aggressive tonight," said IU head coach Tom Crean. "We wanted to play fast and they were executing the game plan. But with teams like this, it's never about executing the offense, it's can you continue to get defensive stops, can you get defensive runs. You've got to make big defensive stops when the game is on the line and we didn't make enough of those."
The Hoosiers (10-9, 1-5) opened the game outscoring the Badgers (14-4, 4-2), 14-6, in the first five minutes, with Hulls scoring 10 of those 14. Back-to-back layups broke the IU run and brought Wisconsin within four, but a three-point play by Victor Oladipo at the 12:43 mark put IU ahead by seven, 17-10. Wisconsin wasn't going away though as the Badgers used an 8-2 run to cut the Hoosiers' lead to one, 19-18, with 10:17 to go in the half. However, Jones III nailed back-to-back jumpers to regain a 23-18 edge for IU. The Hoosiers led by as many as seven in the final seven minutes of the half, but the Badgers whittled away at the lead as a 3-pointer by Jordan Taylor with five seconds remaining in the half cut the Hoosiers halftime lead to four, 34-30.
Hulls opened the second stanza with a defensive board followed by a jumper within the first 18 seconds of the half to keep IU ahead by six, 36-30. A jumper by Keaton Nankivil cut it back to four, but a layup from Jones III at the 18:54 mark kept Indiana with a six-point lead. The Hoosiers led by as many as six before Wisconsin used an 8-0 run to take a 44-42 lead with 13:18 to go in the game. The Badgers and Hoosiers traded the lead until the 10:33 mark when Wisconsin went on to outscore IU, 22-12, in the closing minutes, mostly from the free throw line for the 69-60 win.
The Hoosiers shot well from the field on the night, ending up with 51.0 percent (25-of-49). Indiana shot 60.9 percent in the first half, the fourth straight half the Hoosiers have shot 50 percent or better and the third straight of 60 percent or better. In the last four halves (through the first half tonight) Indiana was 61-for-99 (61 percent) from the floor.
IU knotted the Badgers in rebounding at 26 boards each. Indiana's bench outscored Wisconsin, 11-7.
The Hoosiers return to action on Sunday, Jan. 23 when they visit Iowa at 3 p.m. ET on the Big Ten Network.
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