Hoosiers turn up the D for 13th straight win
If there was a knock on Indiana in their past 12 games, it was a lack of consistency on defense.
Sure, there were some flashes of defensive brilliance, but all in all, the Hoosiers had yet to put it all together for 40 minutes.
Fast forward to Wednesday night.
Indiana (17-1, 6-0 Big Ten) held Iowa to 34 percent shooting, forced 20 turnovers and cruised to a 65-43 victory in front of a sellout crowd at Assembly Hall. The win was the 29th consecutive for IU on Branch McCracken Court.
“Our kids are getting better. Our defense was better tonight,” Indiana coach Kelvin Sampson said. “If you keep working at things and have good kids, you usually improve.”
D.J. White led Indiana with 19 points and Eric Gordon added 17 points, four steals and three blocked shots. Jamarcus Ellis turned in another solid all-around effort with 12 points, a team-high eight rebounds and four assists.
Unlike the first meeting between the two teams on January 2, the outcome was never in doubt. Indiana led 36-27 at halftime and led 46-35 with 13:29 remaining before reeling off nine straight points to put the game away.
Tony Freeman paced Iowa (9-11, 2-4) with 14 points and Justin Johnson, who scored 29 points in the first meeting between the two teams, scored just six points on 1 of 6 shooting.
The 43 points for the Hawkeyes tied a season-low. The other occurrence, however, was a 43-36 upset of then No. 6 Michigan State at Carver Hawkeye Arena.
Indiana will return to action Saturday at 1 p.m. in a non-conference battle with Connecticut. That game will be televised on CBS.