Big Ten roundup: Hoosiers hold on, upset Buckeyes
Bloomington, Ind. — Troy Williams and his Indiana teammates had something to prove Saturday.
Yes, they've got the message about what it takes to win. And, yes, they've finally figured out how to deliver a closing combination.
Williams scored 15 points, grabbed 12 rebounds and helped the Hoosiers remain poised as No. 22 Ohio State made one last charge. But Indiana held on for the 69-66 upset.
"I think they learned a lot this week," coach Tom Crean said, referring to an embarrassing 20-point loss Monday night at Michigan State. "We've been getting mentally tougher all year, but it's not consistent yet. I thought our talk improved during the game. I thought our leadership improved during the game."
Williams delivered three highlight plays, including one sequence when he dunked the ball on a fast break, then raced to the other end and swatted away an Ohio State shot. Freshman shooting star James Blackmon Jr. scored 16 of his 18 points in the second half despite making only one 3-pointer.
A year ago, the Hoosiers repeatedly allowed late leads to slip away .
This time, after nearly blowing a 10-point lead in the final four minutes, they showed they could hang on, thanks to four free throws from Yogi Ferrell in the final 21 seconds and D'Angelo Russell's errant 3-point try at the buzzer.
Indiana (12-4, 2-1) now has more wins (18) over ranked teams since 2011-12 than any school in the nation except Kansas.
"We tried to get our edge back, our swagger back and we just went so hard in practice and it happened tonight in the game, too," Blackmon said.
Ohio State (13-4, 2-2) came up just short.
Shannon Scott scored 16 points and Russell added 13 for the Buckeyes, who charged back with a 13-4 run to get within 65-64. Sam Thompson even had a chance to tie it after a putback with 32 seconds left, but he couldn't complete the three-point play.
"We didn't do the little things. We are down three and we foul with a minute or whatever and we just said, 'Don't foul, just stay solid,' and now we're down five," Buckeyes coach Thad Matta said. "Those are the types of plays that you have to stay sound."
The Hoosiers learned that the hard way.
"I think it's more about momentum than it is about that (grinding it out)," Crean said. "I think it's learning to play through things. I thought we were losing our energy a little bit at one point, and that dunk Troy had brought it back. You need those doses of energy that continue to bring you momentum."
More Big Ten men
No. 11 Maryland 69, (at) Purdue 60: Jake Layman scored 14 points and No. 11 Maryland bounced back from a loss earlier in the week, beating Purdue.
The balanced Terrapins (15-2, 3-1 Big Ten) put four scorers in double figures. Dez Wells had 13 and Melo Trimble and Richaud Pack each added 11.
Coming off a 64-57 loss at Illinois on Wednesday, the Terrapins limited Purdue (10-7, 2-2) to 36.8 field goal shooting (21 of 57). Kendall Stephens led Purdue with 14 points.
The Boilermakers lost for the 13th straight time to a ranked opponent.
Maryland won in its first visit to Mackey Arena.