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Five Quick Takeaways: Second Half Surge Gets Hoosiers Past Princeton

It was by no means flashy, but Indiana prevailed against a feisty Princeton Tigers squad 79-54 on Wednesday night at Assembly Hall to remain unbeaten and move to 5-0 for the first time since the 2013-14 season.

See also:  Stats and Highlights | Miller and Players Post-Game 

Here are five quick observations from the game.

Joey Brunk looked for his shot offensively.

In Indiana’s previous two games, redshirt junior Joey Brunk attempted only two shots in each contest.  Although he made all of them, the Hoosiers are likely going to need more from him as the schedule gets more daunting at the beginning of December and into Big Ten play and the game slows down. A weapon in the half court, Brunk finished the game with 16 points on 7-of-11 from the field and was assertive when he got position in the paint.

Indiana’s pace slowed in the first half.

After scoring 58 points in the opening period in their last outing and no fewer than 43 points in an opening half this season, Princeton forced the Hoosiers into a half court game.  With the Tigers abandoning the offensive boards, Indiana could not get out and run.  IU was held to 7 fast break points and 35 total points in the first 20 minutes of action as they took just a four point lead into the locker room.

Green continues to provide boost off the bench.

In only his second game back from a hamstring injury, senior co-captain Devonte Green provided energy off the bench for head coach Archie Miller. Green was a spark plug offensively, scoring 16 points on 5-of-8 shooting from the field while also dishing out four assists with just one turnover.  On at least four other occasions Green’s teammates missed layups that would have padded his assist total for the night.  While +/- stats can be misleading for just one game, Green’s team co-leading +29 (along with Brunk) tells the story in this one.

The paint was controlled by the Hoosiers.

Entering this game, coach Miller and his staff were concerned about how his team would handle Princeton’s big man Richmond Aririguzoh in the interior. The Tigers’ center was never able to get going, attempting just three shots while scoring four points and committing four turnovers.

From start to finish Indiana took care of business on the inside, outscoring the Tigers 50-22 in the paint. Much of the success inside is a credit to the play of Brunk, Justin Smith and Trayce Jackson-Davis. In addition to Brunk’s strong night, Smith had 14 points, 12 of which came in the paint, and Jackson-Davis had 11 points and four rebounds.

Defense Improved in Second Half.

After giving up 31 points on 46.2 percent shooting from the field in the first half, Indiana clamped down in the second segment.  The Hoosiers held Princeton to 23 second half points on 28 percent shooting while forcing seven turnovers.  Indiana committed just seven second half fouls and forced Princeton into a miserable 2-of-13 effort from three point range in the second half.

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