Indiana Ties Team Record Tonight Despite Poor 3-Point Shooting Performance
For the second straight year, Indiana starts off its season 5-0 with its 73-49 win tonight over Gardner-Webb.
The 24-point win margin was the fifth consecutive game that the Hoosiers won by at least 20+ points, which ties a team record.
For the game, Indiana's big men dominated Gardner-Webb's small front line.
Hoosiers big men Cody Zeller, Derek Elston and Christian Watford combined for 31 points and 25 rebounds in tonight's rout. The trio shot a combined 12 for 23 tonight with Zeller and Elston both reaching double figures in scoring with 13 and 10 points, respectively.
Sophomore Will Sheehey led the Hoosiers tonight though in the scoring department in going seven for 11 from the field with 15 points. Sheehey scored 13 of his 15 points in the second half with 10 fn them coming on five straight possessions.
Fellow classmate of Sheehey, Victor Oladipo, provided the spark for the Hoosiers that kept the crowd in the game throughout the rout in the second half. Oladipo made deflections and even stole an inbound pass after a Hoosier made basket in the second half.
Oladipo finished the game with 13 points, five rebounds and five assists.
If there were any negatives from the contest it was the backcourt shooting and free throw woes for the Hoosiers. Starters Verdell Jones III and Jordan Hulls combined to score only five points tonight. Hulls was one for four from the field, and Jones only attempted one shot and missed it.
The Hoosiers were a dismal three for 18 from three-point land tonight which was the worst of the short season.
After hitting and attempting the most amount of free throws in the Tom Crean-era last game, the Hoosiers were only 12 for 23 tonight, which equated out to be 52.2 percent.
The Hoosiers also failed to reach 50 percent from the field tonight for the first time all season. That stat may be misleading though because they shot 49.2 percent from the game which wasn't that far off.
If you're looking for a positive from the shooting woes, don't look too far. This is most likely due to the Hoosiers playing three games in five days. Usually, the first thing to look for when a team is tired is shooting. Once your legs go your shot goes away.
Luckily, the Hoosiers have six days off before they tip off the next game.
If you're looking for another positive, Indiana once again dominated the boards in out-rebounding Gardner-Webb 41-27.
Gardner Webb was led by freshman Max Landis. Landis played his high school basketball at Perry Meridian High School which is about 45 minutes from Assembly Hall in Indianapolis. He paced the Bulldogs with 18 points on seven for 14 shooting.
Indiana (5-0) will host the two-time defending national runner-up Butler Bulldogs in Assembly Hall at 7 P.M. on Sunday to close out the Hoosiers Invitational.
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