A promising Indiana start was quickly erased, and in the fourth quarter it was Ohio State’s turn for a big run.
IU opened the game against No. 14 Ohio State on Thursday night with an 11-0 run but fell to the Buckeyes 78-70 at Simon Skjodt Assembly Hall. OSU opened the fourth quarter on a 9-0 run of its own and never looked back in the final stanza.
The Hoosiers (9-4) dropped their second Big Ten game of the season and fell out of a first place tie.
Indiana was led by Grace Berger who poured in a career-high tying 26 points and added 10 rebounds. Mackenzie Holmes also had a double-double with 17 points and 10 rebounds. Holmes added five blocks on the evening. Ali Patberg scored nine points and added nine rebounds and four assists.
“We are disappointed that we came up short,” Indiana coach Teri Moren said after the game. “I really thought we got off to a fast, good start. A lot of energy over there on the sideline which was great to see because we knew we had to start the game fast and well. It got to half time, and we still couldn’t knock down shots behind the arc. But we still felt good about the game plan in the second half defensively.”
The Hoosiers struggled from the field, making just 39.7 percent of their shots overall including 1-of-14 from 3-point range. IU also committed 17 turnovers against just 12 assists as the offense struggled to find a rhythm against the Ohio State matchup zone. The shooting struggles carried over to the free throw line as well where IU converted just 15-of-24 attempts.
“We knew that the zone would eventually come, and we were prepared for that,” Moren said. “Unfortunately, we have still continued to struggle from beyond the arc. And then tonight, on top of that, we struggled from the free-throw line. We turned the ball over way more than we have been doing. I think all of those things are just a recipe for a loss especially against a team that has so many weapons. … I thought we had moments defensively where we were really good, but tonight was just a matter of us not being able to put enough points on the board to win.”
Ohio State responded with an 11-1 run after IU’s 11-0 start to the game. The lead changed hands eight times in the second and third quarters as the top-25 teams played the tight matchup that was expected.
No. 16 Indiana will return to action on Sunday when they host Michigan State at 4:30 p.m. That game will be televised by BTN.
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