For a while it seemed like Indiana would never get over the hump, but the Hoosiers broke through in the final eight minutes of the game to defeat a tough Louisville team by the final score of 68-67.
The Hoosiers improve to 8-2 on the season and earn a win that will provide a major resume boost for the NCAA tournament. Indiana returns to action on Saturday against Butler in Indianapolis.
THREE KEYS TO THE GAME
1. Langford earns it. Louisville committed 22 fouls on the day. Romeo Langford was the recipient of 10 of them. Nothing came easy for the freshman, but he didn’t back down. After missing a pair of free throws moments earlier, Langford hit the game clinching shots from the stripe in the final minute. In total he took 14 free throws, and despite all of the physicality directed at him, the New Albany native had just one turnover to go with four assists.
2. Indiana takes care of the ball. After averaging more than 15 turnovers per game on the season, Indiana was much better on Saturday afternoon. While this isn’t the Louisville defense of recent years, the Cardinals still brought good intensity and pressure. The bad news is that Indiana’s primary ball handlers, Devonte Green and Rob Phinisee had three miscues apiece. But as a team this was a much better showing, and IU literally could not have afforded to make one more mistake.
3. The Hoosiers gut one out. Not every home game is going to be a Marquette style blow out. In fact, few of them are likely to follow that script. Indiana trailed for more than 30 minutes of this game but kept grinding away. By emphasizing keeping the ball out of the post on defense, IU made Louisville shoot the ball from the perimeter — a strategy that ultimately paid off as the Cardinals cooled off as the second half wore on.
FINAL BOX SCORE AND SPECIALTY STATS
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