How big was Indiana’s win over Michigan on Saturday evening in Ann Arbor? “This is probably the biggest game since I’ve been here as a coach, that we’ve won,” Mike Woodson said on Saturday night.
Indiana fell behind early, and the margin swelled — first 13-6, then 32-21 as it appeared the Wolverines might pull away for good. But the Hoosiers just kept scratching and clawing back. They cut Michigan’s lead to 37-33 at halftime and took a one-point lead early in the second half. The Wolverines went back out to a 53-46 edge with 11:34 left before IU closed with a 16-8 run.
Let’s take a deeper look at how the Hoosiers won 62-61 with another edition of The Report Card.
Now in sole possession of second place, Indiana (18-7, 9-5) will next face Northwestern at 9 p.m. ET in Evanston on Wednesday.
It was an evening on the offensive end full of peculiar numbers.
Two players — Trayce Jackson-Davis and Jalen Hood-Schifino — scored 49 of the 62 points. Jackson-Davis and Hood-Schifino scored or assisted on the first 16 Indiana made field goals, and they made 19 of the 23 for the contest.
Indiana went back to high ball screens and post entries involving the duo over and over. If Michigan dropped its coverage, Hood-Schifino looked for a pull-up. If they contested the perimeter more aggressively, they looked for Jackson-Davis.
“They were the only ones that were really clicking so we kept them in a lot of pick-and-rolls,” Woodson said post-game. “Fino was finding his gaps and Trayce had his rolls where he was able to finish along with some of his post-up stuff around the rim.”
Everyone else on the team made a combined 13 points on 4-of-15 shooting. Woodson only played seven players, and Hood-Schifino had to push through challenges, with early foul trouble and six turnovers.
IU made just two 3-pointers, and attempted only six. The Hoosiers weren’t particularly efficient from two either — making just 44.7 percent.
Indiana scored just .934 points per possession. That’s their lowest mark in a win this season. They didn’t help themselves with 13 turnovers against a team that doesn’t force many, and just seven offensive rebounds — one of their lowest totals of the year.
IU did get to the free throw line for 18 attempts, and they made 14 of them (77.8 percent).
The headline of the game was this: Indiana’s defense held Michigan scoreless in the last 5:12 of the game. And they needed every single one of those eight stops to secure the one-point win.
“Coming down the stretch run, we became so stingy on the defensive end that we refused to give up good looks and they struggled,” Woodson said.
It did not appear this would be a good defensive night, as Michigan scored 21 points in the first 7:27, as Michigan was hot early from three and had far too many open driving lines.
But IU clamped down. The Hoosiers cut off dribble drives and got into shooters. The effort was all-around better after Michigan looked a step quicker to start the game. The Wolverines had seven turnovers in the second half, and made just 2-of-16 from three after their fast start from long range. Leading scorer Jett Howard was just 1-of-6 from the field in the second half.
“From the 9-10 minute mark of the first half all the way through the rest of the game, our defense was solid,” Woodson said.
Indiana also did a nice job limiting second chances, as UM had only five offensive rebounds.
IU held the Wolverines to .919 points per possession, the second straight game they’ve held an opponent to less than one, and fifth time during a nine-game stretch where the Hoosiers have won eight games.
MORE GAME COVERAGE
- ‘Ain’t no time to be tired’: Trayce Jackson-Davis is giving Indiana everything he has
- Watch: Woodson, Hood-Schifino, Jackson-Davis discuss win at Michigan
- IU basketball: Indiana 62 Michigan 61 — Three keys | Highlights | Final stats
- Race Thompson is out for IU basketball at Michigan
- Long form highlights:
Trayce Jackson-Davis (A) It wasn’t his most efficient night, and there were some signs of fatigue late, but Indiana couldn’t afford to take Jackson-Davis off the court, and he delivered with another massive effort, including a key block in the last two minutes. In addition to his 45th career double-double, he had three assists and just two turnovers despite touching the ball on nearly every possession. He won the game’s marquee matchup with fellow talented big man Hunter Dickinson.
Jordan Geronimo (B) Just how healthy is Geronimo? It’s hard to know. He looked like he had good burst at times, but could also be seen icing his leg when he was on the bench. And despite starting and no real foul trouble, he played just 21 minutes.
Miller Kopp (B) Michigan stuck to him the entire night, so his field goal attempts were limited. Kopp played great defense on the final play of the game, leaving Howard no room to shoot. He continues to elevate his effort defensively, and had three assists to one turnover in 39 minutes.
Jalen Hood-Schifino (A-) Indiana has put a ton on Hood-Schifino’s shoulders, and he keeps delivering, this time with one of his better road efforts. And in this one he overcame a bad start that saw him make just 1-of-4 shots to open the game with three quick turnovers. But the gritty freshman made four straight shots to lead IU back late in the first half, and he played through his mistakes all night. Hood-Schifino also made 4-of-4 from the free throw line in the final six minutes.
Trey Galloway (B-) Galloway struggled to get into an offensive rhythm, but he played solid defense. He had a steal and two defensive rebounds during the last five minute shutout.
Tamar Bates (C-) Bates continues to be a completely different player on the road — and not in a good way on the offensive end. He has improved some on the defensive end, although he still seems to lose track of shooters at times.
Malik Reneau (C) His numbers weren’t great, but Reneau was on the floor for most of IU’s closing stretch, and IU was better overall with him in the game. He checked in with 3:55 left in the game during the critical closing stretch. The freshman reverted back to fouling too much and had a key turnover late in the contest.
In total, Indiana had 10 scholarship players healthy and available. Race Thompson was out for precautionary reasons. Logan Duncomb was out due to an illness, and Xavier Johnson (foot) remains unavailable.
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