Hoosiers Fall in Nashville
November 24, 2003Boxscore
Nashville, Tenn.-- The Indiana men's basketball dropped its first game of the season Monday night to the Vanderbilt Commodores, 73-60 at the Memorial Gym in Nashville, Tenn. Memorial Gym is traditionally a difficult place to play as the Commodores have not lost a home opener since 1990. The Hoosiers are 1-1 on the year, while Vanderbilt is 2-0.
The Hoosiers held Vanderbilt to only 33.9 percent from the field and only 6-for-24 from behind the three-point arch. It marked the first time Indiana held an opponent to under 35-percent shooting since Jan. 21, 2003, when Ohio State shot 26.8 percent in Assembly Hall.
The two teams traded baskets and free throws through the first 5:30, with the game tied at nine. The big bucket through the stretch came when senior swingman A.J. Moye drove baseline and hit senior George Leach, who slammed it home to give the Hoosiers a 4-2 advantage.
The Commodores went on a 13-0 run to take a 22-9 lead at the 10:49 mark of the first half. Indiana shot only 2-14 through the first 10 minutes of the game. Vanderbilt hit three three-pointers during the run, while Indiana went 0-9 during the Commodores run. Redshirt freshman Rodrick Wilmont ended the run with steal and lay-up.
At the break, the Hoosiers trailed, 31-21, and had not made one three pointer all half, going 0-5 from behind the arch. Both teams did not shoot the ball well in the first stanza as the Hoosiers shot 20 percent from the field, while Vanderbilt shot 28.1 percent from the floor.
Indiana got within six points on three occasions in the second half. In the opening four minutes of the second half, the Hoosiers cut the deficit to six points on a pair of Wilmont three-pointers. The Miramar, Fla., native scored a career-high 13 points and just missed a double-double as he had nine rebounds.
"We had a bad shooting night," said head coach Mike Davis. "I thought (Roderick) Wilmont played great tonight. I was disappointed that our cuts to the basket were not hard, and we did not set good screens. We need games like this to get us ready for our Big Ten schedule."
Indiana cut the Vanderbilt lead to six for the final time at the 12:21 mark of the second half following three Bracey Wright free throws. Wright finished the game 10-of-15 from the free throw line, as he registered his second career double-double with 18 points and career high 11 rebounds. The Colony, Texas, product had 17 points and 10 rebounds against Temple on Dec. 28 of last season.
Leach finished with 11 points and five blocks. The Hoosiers are now 12-4, when Leach has four or more blocks. The Hoosiers finished the night with only six assists, marking the first time since Dec. 21, 2002 against Kentucky when Indiana only had only six assists.
"I thought George played well," Davis said. "He needed a game like tonight. George had good looks at the basket. I think we'll finish some of the plays we missed tonight down the road."
Matt Freije led the Commodores offense with 32 points and 13 rebounds. Despite scoring a career-high, the senior forward shot only 6-of-19 from the field. Freije was perfect from the line though, as he was 18-for-18. He was also the only Commodore in double digits.
"He's certainly a special player and a matchup problem," Davis said. " I thought we did a good job on him except for all the free throws. We held him to only 6-of-19 shooting from the field, but we made some bad plays that got him to the free throw line. Overall I'm proud of my guys. Coach Stallings did a great job of preparing his guys."
Indiana returns to action on Saturday, Nov. 29, when they take part in the Wooden Tradition at Conseco Fieldhouse in Indianapolis. The Hoosiers face Xavier at 4:00 p.m. The game will be televised on WTTV-Channel 4 Indianapolis.
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