Indiana hands Purdue worst home loss in program history
By Michael Osipoff 648-3137 or email@example.com January 30, 2013 11:24PM
Indiana forward Will Sheehey celebrates his dunk against Purdue in the first half of an NCAA college basketball game in West Lafayette, Ind., Wednesday, Jan. 30, 2013. (AP Photo/Michael Conroy)
Updated: March 2, 2013 11:48AM
WEST LAFAYETTE — If it had been a boxing match, it would have been declared a TKO.
If it had been an election, it would have been called early in the night.
Heck, if it had been a lower level of competition, perhaps there even would have been a running clock.
But it’s high-major college basketball, and they played it all the way through, and Indiana thoroughly dominated from start to finish. The No. 3 Hoosiers demonstrated their current superiority in this rivalry, demolishing Purdue 97-60 on Wednesday night at Mackey Arena.
“To win here, you really have to be on top your game,” Indiana coach Tom Crean said. “It’s not just offensive and defensive execution. It’s attitude, energy and mental toughness, and our guys had it.”
For the Boilermakers (11-10, 4-4 Big Ten), it was their worst loss in Mackey Arena, having lost by 21 points to Illinois in 2001. It actually was their worst home loss in program history, having lost by 36 points to Indiana in 1954 at Lambert Fieldhouse.
Purdue coach Matt Painter praised Indiana for its combination of skill and the willingness to “do the dirty work.”
“When it ends up 40 points, I don’t think it’s one sequence that gets you,” he said. “I was impressed with how hard Indiana played, and how unselfish they played. … They played harder than us, they played better than us.
“When you play hard, you get to do whatever you want. They took us behind the woodshed, and whipped us. It’s not bragging if you can back it up; they backed it up.”
The Hoosiers (19-2, 7-1) have won the last three games in the series.
“They played with a resolve,” said Crean, whose team has won five straight road games and six of its last seven. “They were very authoritative on their drives, their passes. Their defense was up and active.
“Our guys never took their foot of the gas pedal, which is really important for our team to take the next step.”
Indiana placed five players in double-figure scoring, led by Cody Zeller with 19 points and 11 rebounds. Victor Oladipo and Christian Watford had 17 points each. Yogi Ferrell added 11 points, and Jordan Hulls 10.
“They have a lot of weapons … It takes all five guys on Purdue to contain them,” Travis Carroll said.
A.J. Hammons paced Purdue with a career-high 30 points, and five blocked shots. Fellow freshman Ronnie Johnson added 13.
The Hoosiers shot 49.3 percent from the field, including 12-of-25 from 3-point range. The Boilermakers committed 18 turnovers, compared to eight for Indiana. The Hoosiers also held a 39-29 rebounding advantage.
After defeating Michigan State on Sunday and ahead of a showdown against No. 1 Michigan on Saturday, Indiana played with focus against Purdue. The Hoosiers reeled off nine straight points, capped by an Oladipo 3-pointer, to take a 27-17 lead with 9:13 left in the first half. They then scored 13 straight points, with Zeller finishing the run with a tip-in, to stretch their cushion to 47-25, before “settling” for a 47-27 halftime lead.
“We weren’t knocking down shots, and they started knocking down shots,” Hammons said. “We got down ourselves. … We should’ve pulled together.”
Said Ronnie Johnson: “They plain out-worked us.”