Late Run Caps Hoosiers 69-55 Defeat of Minnesota On Senior Night
March 5, 2008
BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- At shootaround on Thursday Indiana senior D.J. White mentioned two things would help round out his storied career with the Hoosiers. A three-point basket and seeing the numbers 2008 on one of the many historical banners that hang in Assembly Hall.
He got his first wish, when he took a long pass from roommate Lance Stemler with 1.6 seconds left before halftime and nailed a turnaround jumper from 25-feet. The second will have to wait as the Hoosiers need help from Northwestern on Saturday when the Wildcats host Wisconsin and the Hoosiers must win at Penn State to earn a share of the Big Ten title.
The Hoosiers (25-5, 14-3) stayed in contention for that crown with their school-record 17th home victory, a 69-55 win over Minnesota in the final home game for White, Stemler, Mike White and Adam Ahlfeld.
White, a senior forward, had 17 points and five rebounds before departing to a loud ovation with about a minute left.
Indiana, which has won 25 regular-season games for the first time since 1992-93, is tied for second in the conference with Purdue, one game behind Wisconsin (15-2).
The Hoosiers outscored the visitors 21-7 over the final 7:58 to sweep the season series from Minnesota for the first time since 1993.
White's desperation triple had given IU a 31-27 lead at intermission. The Hoosiers had built the lead to 40-33 with 14:04 left, but the Gophers were not about to give in.
Lawrence McKenzie had 22 points for Minnesota (18-11, 8-9), and led a charge which saw Minnesota take a 47-46 lead with 8:26 to go on a layup by Dan Coleman. Eric Gordon, who scored a team-high 20 for Indiana, hit a pair of charity tosses to regain the lead at 48-47. McKenzie made one of two from the line to tie the score after the media timeout. Gordon would make one of two himeslf from the line to give IU a 49-48 lead.
After White blocked a layup by Coleman, sophomore Armon Bassett would give IU a cushion with a long triple to make it 52-48. After the teams traded baskets, Jamarcus Ellis would grab a defensive rebound, one of a career-high 13 boards for the junior, and after being fouled knocked in two more free throws to up the lead to 56-50 with 5:16 to go.
Gordon would add two free throws and White would add a jumper to make it 60-50 with 3:35 left. Gordon would chalk up a layup and Jordan Crawford would add two more free throws to extend the run to 64-50.
In the first half, Indiana used an 11-0 run to build a 15-7 lead, Minnesota answered with six straight points to close to 20-18 midway through the first half and got as close as 28-27 with 1.6 seconds to go.
The Hoosiers will travel to Penn State on Sunday for a 2 p.m. game on ESPN.
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