Coaches love to talk about players impacting the game beyond their stat line.
A first glance at Cody Zeller’s offensive production in Wednesday night’s victory against Penn State backs that up.
Zeller, the preseason All-American, didn’t make a field goal for the first time in his college career, but the seventh-ranked Hoosiers still routed the Nittany Lions, 72-49.
Zeller had posted consecutive double-doubles in IU’s previous two games. But he couldn’t find his touch against Penn State (8-11, 0-7 Big Ten), finishing with a career-low two points while hitting 2-of-4 from the free-throw line. He also had eight rebounds.
“He had problems?” Victor Oladipo said when asked about Zeller’s offensive woes. “Cody did a lot of other things to impact the game. He had 10 deflections and rebounded the ball.
“He might be having a slow night on offense, but he’s doing what it takes to win.”
“He didn’t really look for that many opportunities to score,” Indiana coach Tom Crean said of Zeller. “He does a lot of different things in the flow of the game. He might be guarded by one person but everyone knows when he gets the ball.
“He knows he can be as aggressive as he wants to be. I just get concerned about his technique, make sure he’s finishing.”
With Zeller and the rest of the offense fairly ineffective inside, the Hoosiers (17-2, 5-1) did their damage from beyond the arc.
IU hit 11-of-20 on 3-pointers while making just 9-of-24 from inside the arc. The struggles were echoed at the free-throw line, where the Hoosiers shot just 56.8 percent (21-of-37).
“We weren’t hitting a lot of shots,” said Oladipo, who led the Hoosiers with 19 points. “But at the end of the day, we were coming back and locking up on defense.”
That was the keyword among Indiana’s players: defense.
“Points don’t win games, it’s your defensive effort,” Will Sheehey said, pointing to IU’s three defensive stops in a row to fuel an 8-0 run that opened the second half.
It was a strong start coming out of halftime for the Hoosiers, who had been outscored in the second half of every Big Ten game except the first meeting with Penn State.
“It seems like everybody in the country doesn’t think we have good second halves,” Oladipo said.
Not so Wednesday night, when the Hoosiers were 10-of-17 from the field, including 6-of-8 on 3-pointers, in the second half.
Meanwhile, the Nittany Lions hit just 17-of-51 from the field, including an 8-for-27 performance in the first half as they fell behind 33-19.
Zeller’s previous career-low for made field goals was two, which he did three times as a freshman and against Georgia this season.
Freshman point guard Yogi Ferrell had a season-high 15 points, Sheehey scored 12, and Christian Watford added 10 points.
“I was just taking what the defense was giving me,” Ferrell said.
D.J. Newbill led the Nittany Lions with 18 points and Jermaine Marshall scored 12 before fouling out. Brandon Taylor (0 points) and Sasa Borovnjak (4 points) also fouled out as Penn State was whistled for 29 fouls.
PENN STATE (8-11) — Taylor 0-6 0-0 0, Borovnjak 1-5 2-2 4, Newbill 7-17 4-6 18, Marshall 5-11 1-2 12, Colella 0-1 1-2 1, Maduegbunam 0-0 0-0 0, Jack 0-3 0-0 0, Montminy 0-0 0-0 0, Graham 2-3 1-2 5, Ackerman 0-0 0-0 0, Wisniewski 0-0 0-0 0, Travis 2-5 4-4 9. Totals 17-51 13-18 49.
INDIANA (17-2) — Watford 3-8 3-7 10, Zeller 0-4 2-4 2, Hulls 3-7 0-0 8, Oladipo 4-7 9-12 19, Ferrell 6-7 0-1 15, Sheehey 4-6 1-2 12, Mosquera-Perea 0-0 0-1 0, Creek 0-2 0-0 0, Abell 0-2 2-4 2, Hollowell 0-1 4-6 4. Totals 20-44 21-37 72.
Halftime—Indiana 33-19. 3-Point Goals—Penn St. 2-15 (Travis 1-4, Marshall 1-5, Colella 0-1, Newbill 0-2, Taylor 0-3), Indiana 11-20 (Sheehey 3-3, Ferrell 3-4, Oladipo 2-2, Hulls 2-5, Watford 1-3, Hollowell 0-1, Creek 0-2). Fouled Out—Borovnjak, Marshall, Taylor. Rebounds—Penn St. 32 (Newbill 7), Indiana 39 (Watford 9). Assists—Penn St. 5 (Marshall 2), Indiana 14 (Oladipo 5). Total Fouls—Penn St. 29, Indiana 19. A—17,472.
Coaches love to talk about players impacting the game beyond their stat line.
ISU falls one step short at MVC women's semis
ISU's women's basketball team falls 66-58 to Drake in MVC women's tournament semifinals.
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Indiana State’s women’s basketball postseason struggles continued Saturday in The Family Arena, site of the seventh neutral-site version of the Missouri Valley Conference Tournament.
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The toughness — both mental and physical — of Marina Laramie and Racheal Mahan — is a big reason the Indiana State women’s basketball team won five games in a row to close the regular season.
The resolve of the Sycamore post duo was put to the test Friday in the MVC Tournament quarterfinals, and Laramie and Mahan were up to the task.
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To see if Noah Vonleh will head to the NBA after one season in Bloomington.
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Purdue men’s basketball coach Matt Painter appreciated his team’s effort Thursday.
He still didn’t like the numbers on the box score — or the scoreboard.
Aaron Craft and LaQuinton Ross combined to score nine points in a late 12-4 run that gave No. 24 Ohio State control and the Buckeyes held on for a 63-61 win — only after Terone Johnson’s buzzer-beating 3-pointer came up short in the first round of the Big Ten tournament.
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Pitching dominated Tuesday’s opening day of play in the Rebel Spring Games for the Indiana State softball team, which defeated Bucknell 2-0 before falling 2-0 to Creighton.
“The girls did a great job in the first game getting a couple runs,” ISU coach Shane Bouman said. “We leaned on [sophomore] Yvette Alvarez who pitched really well. We probably got as much as we could out of her and probably should have changed earlier so put that on me. We have a couple little things we can clean up and get a little better and we will be ready to go tomorrow.”
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Michigan (23-7 15-3) avenged last year’s defeat in the last game of the regular season. In that game, Morgan’s tap-in rolled off the rim as time expired, giving the Hoosiers the victory and costing the Wolverines a share of the conference title.
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Indiana State had pitching questions coming into the season, having lost its entire starting staff from a year ago.
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