Sometimes it isn’t your night.
Despite renewed energy coming off a huge upset over Michigan State in East Lansing this past weekend, the Indiana Hoosiers were unable to stop the lethal shooting of the Iowa Hawkeyes as IU lost 77-72 on Thursday night.
Make no mistake, this wasn’t the same Hoosier team that lost seven in a row, including 15-point and 23-point home losses to Nebraska and Michigan respectively. This was a Hoosier team that played with a similar determination to that of last Saturday night, but this time the opponent would not buckle to the pressure.
Numerous times throughout the game the Hoosiers [13-10 (4-8)] would smother the Hawkeye offense late into the shot clock, only for Iowa to make a back-breaking bucket to negate all that hard work. Some were late defensive breakdowns by Indiana, but many of them were just awesome shots by Iowa, specifically Jordan Bohannon.
The Junior Guard scored 19 of his game-high 25 points in the second half and sank multiple threes late into the shot clock, including an absolutely absurd off-balance 30-foot fade away right before the shot clock buzzer sounded with 1:31 left in the game to extend the Hawkeye lead to six points.
“Iowa deserves a ton of credit with their play,” said Indiana Head Coach Archie Miller. “They made really, really big baskets, timely baskets.”
The Hoosiers overcame a rollercoaster first half that saw them go on 13-2 and 9-0 runs but also saw them commit eight turnovers that lead to 16 Iowa points. The Hawkeyes also made seven three-points during the first half to build a 10-point halftime lead.
IU corrected most of those mistakes in the second half, limiting the Hawkeyes [18-5 (7-5)] to just 10-of-25 (40%) shooting in the second half and just 3-of-9 (33%) from deep, but they couldn’t stop Bohannon, who made all three of those treys.
Langford scored 15 of his team-high 22 points in the second half, Juwan Morgan scored 17 points but was limited to just 22 minutes because of foul trouble, and De’Ron Davis had a career-high seven assists. However, the hole was once again too deep as Iowa answered every run and made just enough shots to win.
“I wasn’t terribly disappointed in our team tonight,” said Miller. “(Iowa) has a really good team and this game, it’s going to be evaluated just like Michigan State: Are we in check with our attitude; did we come together; did we play hard, and did we play unselfish. I think we did a lot of those things. We just weren’t quite good enough to finish this one off just in terms of being able to get one-time stops.”
Considering Iowa had just beaten Big Ten-leading Michigan by 15 points this past weekend, overall Indiana did a great job competing with the Hawkeyes and were just beaten by the better team. The fight is still there in the Hoosiers, and despite now having a 4-8 conference record, the Hoosiers still have chance of making the NCAA Tournament.
Only the margin for error is now much thinner.