Wisconsin 69, Indiana 60

MADISON, Wis. — The Indiana Hoosiers could not pull out the win on Thursday against Wisconsin, but it found a way to replicate the effort it showed five days earlier against Michigan.

The Hoosiers were up by four at halftime, 34-30, but saw the Badgers win on the strength of 17 free-throws in the second half. In the end, it was a 69-60 win for Wisconsin, its 32nd in the last 33 games in the Kohl Center.

“No free throws in the first half,” Indiana coach Crean said. “Seventeen free throws in the second half. I guess that’s Big Ten basketball.”

The final death knell for the Hoosiers came with a minute left, when Jon Leuer turned towards the basket, initiated contact with Tom Pritchard, made the shot and saw Pritchard called for the foul (his arms were straight in the air). When Leuer (20 points) made the free-throw, the Badgers (14-4, 4-2 Big Ten) led by seven.

The Hoosiers (10-9, 1-5) came out with plenty of energy during the first half, led by guard Jordan Hulls. He made four-straight baskets and even took an uncharacteristically deep 3-pointer.

“You let your best players play,” Crean said. “Jordan took shots and he was very aggressive. I think there’s some growth with him on that part. I don’t think its anything special we are doing. We’ve been saying he needs to shoot the ball more since last year.”

Hulls had 10 points in the first half and led Indiana with 16. Verdell Jones added 15, going over the 1,000-point barrier in the process. Now with 1,004 points, Jones is the 42nd Hoosier to hit the mileston.

Indiana shot 51 percent from the field, using spacing and screening to confuse the Badgers, coach Bo Ryan said. The result was plenty of drives to the rim and pull-up jumpers.

12 comments

  1. The first half was the best basketball played by the HOOSIERS since TC arrived in B-town. Lets continue to grow and carry that fight into Iowa on Sunday,and get a W.

  2. Against Wisconsin IU played the game the way it is supposed to be played… great energy, good defense and movement on the offensive end. I thought Tom Pritchard played his best game in a very long time. He was called for some phantom fouls I am at a lost to figure out. WI gets 0 FTs in 1st half & 17 in 2nd?, really? The team needs to keep up the same effort from now on and they’ll win some games in the B10. Jones and Watford fall into old habits from time to time from lack of concentration, I think. But all in all a fine effort, I see marked improvement. Go Hoosiers!!

  3. Jordy seems to be enjoying playing more. The kind of passion he has for the game also feeds on results! Iowa gives us a great shot at a road win. Hope the quick turn is not too draining. If they come in with the same level of energy and aggressive play, here comes win 2!!

  4. These kids played hard. They deserve to catch a break. If they continue to play hard like that they will knock off a good team or two this year.

  5. Great basketball for 2/3rds of the game. Towards the end the unfortunately reverted to one on one ball. If they keep with the first half motion offense with screens, passes until they get open shot or open drive to bucket they will win more games. They are finally getting on to something that many have been crying out for for 3 years.

  6. I thought IU played a very good game, excellent at times. It’s not like they were playing a bunch of no-talent schmucks. Anybody that says Bo Ryan isn’t one of the best Xs and Os coaches around clearly hasn’t watched his teams play.

    I was dreading this game, figuring it was another chance for the nation to see how bad we still are, but was proven wrong. IU did better than most teams will do at Wisconsin; consider Ryan’s win percentage there over his tenure. I very much respect Wisconsin, and for IU to be within 5 points of them with a minute left, pleases me greatly with regards to the progress of our team.

    I hope the team can keep up this level of play, and within that, this level of discipline. With only a few exceptions, they played under control, valued the ball and moved with purpose on offense, resulting in good shots and shooting percentage. The double-teaming in the post clearly threw the Badgers off for quite a while, so hats off to the coaches for that. This level of play would probably have gotten IU at least 2 wins against BC, N. Iowa, Colorado and Penn St., possibly 3.

  7. Great game plan ,they should have stayed with it.Pritchard played his best game ever.He was over matched all night and never quit.Hulls,Rivers were awsome and they gave it all they had.The bench was out of sink all night and were never a factor.I.U. had many chances to win the game and could not get a break.As I have said before Wisconson is no walk in the park especially at home.But we gave them a scare.Great intensity until the eight minute mark.If VJ3 and Watford could guard anybody we could have stolen this one,we were so close!Has anyone heard how Maurice Creeks surgery went? What a tough kid!

  8. But, but, but……..the bedwetters say Crean can’t coach at all.

    I thought the Hoosiers did a great job last night.

  9. Great job by the Hoosiers loved the effort that was out there on the floor last night. Watch out in a two years the sleeping giant of the Big Ten will be awaken!
    GO HOOSIERS!!

  10. I also thought it was a great game energy and scheme wise. It would be nice to have Watford and Jones play a good game on the same night. With the exception of Michigan, it seems when Jones is on Watford is off, and that is frustrating. It worries me that Watford can’t play against guys of equal or greater height. Maybe I am imagining it but it seems he just gets crushed inside and usually can’t elevate over anyone down low. His inside shots usually consist of him falling sideways with the defenders hands almost on the ball, if not touching the ball. Does anyone else see that or am I way off the mark?

  11. JL, I’d say Watford’s problems inside were accurately summed up by Stephen Bardo last night: his greatest challenge is improving his strength. That one late 3-pt play by Leuer, he just got easily moved out of the way. He may have been the most talented big man in the game last night, but Wisconsin’s guys were the most physically mature. That said, Leuer and Nankivil (dang their guys have tough names to spell) are seniors and Christian is a soph, so next year and the year after, hopefully the tables will be turned and he’ll be muscling people around.

  12. May actually use my tix for next home game. Not a bandwagon fan, know you can’t win them all, but just couldn’t stand going when it didn’t look like they even cared. Good game guys.

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