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December 20, 2012

After tough practices, IU dominates Mount St. Mary's for 90-54 victory

Elston makes first appearance of season, but Hoosiers lose Creek

BLOOMINGTON — Mount St. Mary’s coach Jamion Christian was an assistant last season at VCU, which pushed Indiana to the limit in the second round of the NCAA Tournament.

The Mountaineers have some work to do to get to that level.

The sixth-ranked Hoosiers bounced back from their first college basketball loss of the season with a dominating performance against Mount St. Mary’s, winning 93-54 on Wednesday night.

“We just wanted to come out with great energy. What happened in the past is the past,” Remy Abell said.

Four days after shooting under 43 percent from the field in an 88-86 loss to Butler, the Hoosiers (10-1) had one of the best shooting nights in school history against the Mountaineers (4-5).

The Hoosiers hit 36-of-51 field goals, a 70.6 shooting percentage that ranks as fourth-best all-time for IU.

“We reversed the ball, everyone cut well,” said Will Sheehey, who scored 16 points off the bench to share IU’s scoring lead with 16 points.

The Hoosiers went through intense practices after the Butler loss — “not fun” was how Sheehey succinctly described them.

The payoff? Indiana’s 28th straight nonconference home win. But the practices also came with a cost, as Maurice Creek suffered a foot injury in Sunday’s practice that will sideline him indefinitely.

“We don’t have a timeframe on [a return], we hope it’s not long,” Crean said.

Creek missed significant time in his first two seasons at Indiana, and sat out all of last season, with knee injuries.

On the bright side, Derek Elston made his season debut for the Hoosiers after missing the first 11 games because of surgery for a torn meniscus. He had two points and two rebounds in nine minutes of action.

“It felt great to get back out there again,” Elston said. “You can only go so through many practices before you know you really want to get out there and play.”

Elston had participated in warmups before the Butler game, but Tom Crean said, “It might have been a bit of a reach to play him minutes Saturday.”

“Yesterday afternoon we brought some guys back, his energy was really good,” Crean said of Elston, who received a standing ovation when he checked in midway through the first half.

“Sometimes I feel like I’m just not out there, people don’t remember you. But when I go out there and get that standing ovation (it felt good),” Elston said.

Christian Watford scored 15, Victor Oladipo scored 14 and Abell had 12 points for the Hoosiers, who have a quick turnaround with a game Friday night against Florida Atlantic.

Rashad Whack led Mount St. Mary’s with 17 points, while Josh Castellanos and Sam Prescott each scored 10. The Mountaineers, who came into the game last in the nation in rebounds per game, had just 18 against the Hoosiers.

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