Quick thoughts on a 74-68 win over Minnesota:
How it happened: Assembly Hall grew restless and the tension in the building was more than noticeable late in the second half. That’s because a 16-point first half lead was completely erased by a pesky Minnesota group that scored 30 points in the paint in the second half. The Gophers took the lead at 67-66 with 3:54 to play, but Indiana answered with two straight buckets by freshman Thomas Bryant to regain control and ultimately hold on. Bryant was the difference in the game for Indiana as he finished with a career-high 23 points. On an afternoon where the Hoosiers couldn’t hit from deep (2-of-18), it was just enough to escape a loss that would have been head scratching. Indiana, however, moves to 18-4 overall and 8-1 in the Big Ten at the midway point of league play.
Standout performer: Bryant was terrific in finishing with 23 points (on 11-of-13 shooting) and eight rebounds. The Hoosiers probably didn’t find him quite enough throughout the afternoon, but his two baskets in the final two minutes sealed up the victory.
Statistic that stands out: After holding Minnesota to .74 points per possession in the first half, Indiana allowed the Gophers to score 1.17 points after intermission. The Hoosiers did manage to hold the Gophers under a point per possession on the afternoon – a feat they’ve now accomplished in eight of nine conference games – but the second half defensive performance had glaring issues.
Filed to: Minnesota Golden Gophers