Some IU fans would probably have expected a letdown game at this point in the season. However, I doubt that anyone was afraid of the Coppin State Eagles. I also doubt that anyone could have foreseen the terrible start that the Hoosiers had in this one. The starters missed their first nine shots, and just about everyone who played turned it over a least once in the first ten minutes. Among the early turnover lowlights were Yogi Ferrell's back-to-back turnovers, and Remy Abell coming off the bench for Jordan Hulls (who had just committed his second TO) and immediately turning the ball over as well. The Hoosiers didn't lead until Christian Watford (who had no turnovers for the game, btw) snagged a steal and hit a three with 9:26 left to put IU ahead 14-11. From there, the Hoosiers (and in particular, Will Sheehey, Vic Oladipo, and Remy Abell) forged a 33-19 halftime lead. Oladipo got a steal and a dunk within 5 seconds of the start of the second half, but IU again struggled a bit for about 5 or so minutes until Vic sandwiched four free-throws around a steal at the 14:15 minute mark to kick off a 15-3 run that boosted the Hoosier lead to 61-33 by the 9:30 mark, and erased any possible doubt that could've been left about the outcome of this one. Some notes from the box score:
- Cody Zeller did not excel in this one. He finished with 9 points and 7 rebounds, but also with four fouls.
- Jordan Hulls also struggled a bit, turning the ball over three times and going 1-for-5 from the field until he made a three late in the game.
- Victor Oladipo was pretty firmly the player of the game. Sure, he had 2 turnovers and 2 missed threes, but he also shot 5-of-7 on two's, hit all four of his free-throws, notched the Hoosiers' only block alongside 3 steals and 6 rebounds, and passed for 6 assists to boot.
- Will Sheehey was no slouch either, posting a very similar stat line to Vic with 14 points (on 5-9 shooting), 6 rebounds, and 4 assists. Sheehey didn't get any steals or blocks, but he did hit a three.
- Remy Abell was a key sub in the first half, and once again shot perfectly for the field, going 4-for-4 to notch 10 points. He also had three assists and steal, too.
- Off the bench, Austin Etherington grabbed three offensive rebounds and had 2 assists in his eight minutes, while Jeff Howard notched a pair buckets.
- Jeremy Hollowell seems to have recovered his shooting stroke, going 3-for-4 from the field (7 points) and dishing a couple of nice passes to Howard.
- Coppin State put up a nice fight for a while, but just didn't have the guns to stick with IU. They shot 5-for-23 on threes (21.7%) and 8-of-14 on frees (57%). Furthermore, they turned the ball over 17 times, and had only 7 assists.
- Indiana didn't hit their threes all that well (33%) and turned the ball over 14 times, but did shoot 63.8% on twos and 85% on free-throws, so that was good to see.
There's not a lot to say about this one, except to be grateful that noone got injured and that Sheeladipo and Abell were able to lead the Hoosiers when a couple of key players (Hulls, Zeller) were playing very well. Indiana was far from their best, but still had cleared the bench against an inferior opponent. IU now gets a week off before hosting Central Connecticut State next Saturday.
Any favorite moments from this game that any of you would care to share?