The Hoosiers still can not figure out the formula to win on the road.
Tonight they were missing the key ingredients. They were outrebounded, could not convert on free throws, and threw the ball away too many times while being puzzled by Iowa’s zones and presses. All of it led to a second-half disaster and an 83-74 loss for their fourth straight on the road this season and eighth overall.
The turnovers were the major problem. In the first half, Indiana managed to lead despite having nine turnovers. Then the Hawkeyes decided to speed up the game to force the Hoosiers to make mistakes. This led to 14 second-half miscues for a total of 23 for the night.
Iowa was able to capitalize off of the press. They scored 34 points off of Hoosier turnovers. In two minutes, Indiana managed to throw the ball away four times. The fourth one was capped off by a Kris Murray (29 points and 11 rebounds) slam that stretched the lead to ten.
“When you turn the ball 23 times, and eight of those came from our guards Rob (Phinisee) and X (Xavier Johnson), that can’t happen,” said head coach Mike Woodson.
“I need to get more leadership there in terms of them being able to calm the storm, get the ball up, and execute something to at least get us an opportunity to score the ball.”
For the second road game in a row, the Hoosiers were also out-rebounded. The Hawkeyes managed to grab 35 rebounds to Indiana’s 31 and Iowa had 16 offensive rebounds.
Those offensive boards led to 16-second chance points. On one possession in the second half the Hawkeyes had three consecutive rebounds and eventually scored. It was a similar sequence to one against Penn State, the last– and only other time– that the Hoosiers were outrebounded.
“They out hustled us all across the board,” said Trayce Jackson-Davis.
Points were also left off the board due to the team’s inability to convert from the charity stripe. As a unit, the Hoosiers shot 13-of-21 for 61.9 percent from the line. Many were missed at crucial times, and the Hoosiers connected on just 5-of-11 after halftime.
With the Hoosiers down three, Parker Stewart–11 points, three assists, and just one turnover– pushed the ball in transition off a rebound, drove the lane, and finished through contact. However, he missed the potential game-tying free throw and IU would never tie or take the lead again.
“It’s the little things you know that we got to get better and I got to help them I got to help them get better on the road. When we’re in tight games and make them comfortable in terms of trying to bring it home,” added Woodson.
The Hoosiers remain winless on the road. Their drought extends to eight consecutive losses stemming back to last season’s win at Evanston against Northwestern. Their next opportunity is against Nebraska on Monday. They will look to get the proverbial monkey off their backs.
“We played them earlier in the Big Ten season so far and you know they’ll be ready for us and you know, we got to go down there and commit ourselves to 40 minutes,” Woodson said of the upcoming matchup.
“You know, I thought we played a great first half tonight and an awful second half. You got to put two halves together to win on the road”
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