Indiana defeated Northern Illinois by a final score of 85-49 at Simon Skjodt Assembly Hall in Bloomington, Ind. on Friday evening.
The Hoosiers were led by Trayce Jackson-Davis’ 19 points, 7 rebounds and 7 blocks. Xavier Johnson added 13 points and 3 assists. Race Thompson had a double-double with 12 points and 10 rebounds.
IU (2-0) will return to action on Wednesday night when they face St. John’s in Bloomington.
THREE KEYS TO THE GAME (Will be updated)
1. Jackson-Davis and Thompson dominate. The veteran frontcourt duo combined for 31 points, 17 rebounds and 8 blocks while earning 17 free throws and converting on 12 of them. They made 9 of their 14 shots from the field. Indiana outscored NIU in the paint 36-18. Thompson had double-digit rebounds for the second straight game, while Jackson-Davis tied for fourth all-time in the IU record books for blocks in a game. Indiana’s 9 team blocks were more than they had in any game last year.
2. Defense maintains the effort this time. Indiana held the Huskies to 30.4 percent shooting and forced 23 turnovers. Unlike its second half collapse against Eastern Michigan on Tuesday, this time the Hoosiers played strong defense for 40 minutes, limiting NIU to 23.8 percent with 10 turnovers in the first half, and 36 percent with 13 turnovers in the second half. NIU scored just .69 points per possession for the game. That’s the lowest figure since a win last year over North Alabama.
3. Johnson sets the tone. Xavier Johnson had 13 points, 3 assists, 2 steals and a block — all in the first half. Together with Rob Phinisee Indiana appears to have its best tandem at point guard in a long time. Johnson has elite quickness that allows him to break down the defense and create scoring opportunities late in the shot clock. With the duo leading the way IU’s offense was crisp and efficient. The Hoosiers scored 1.16 points per possession.
STATS AND HIGHLIGHTS
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