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Defense responds in second half to help spark Purdue

Walking off the court to the locker room after the first half, coach Matt Painter didn't appear to be speaking to anyone specifically.

But his fury wasn't hidden.

"We need to (bleeping) guard somebody," Painter was spotted saying.

No doubt the way No. 8 Purdue defended Indiana in the first half -- the Hoosiers shot 52 percent, scored 47 points and had several uncontested shots -- deserved some choice words.

And Painter let his players know that at halftime -- and included some crucial words on how to adjust.

In the first half, Indiana had success getting open shots after ball screens. Typically, forward Tom Pritchard would set a screen for a guard and then slip to the basket. Purdue defended the play as it usually does -- JaJuan Johnson "hedged," meaning he bounced out to stop the guard from getting to the basket. But when that happens, someone is supposed to help Johnson by taking the man that's cutting to the rim. Oftentimes, the Boilermakers didn't offer proper help and that produced easy baskets, including Pritchard's two-handed dunk in the final seconds of the first half to give IU a 47-43 lead.

Pritchard scored 13 first-half points.

"We kept on blowing defensive assignments and had to make adjustments at halftime," senior Chris Kramer said. "Giving up 47 points in the first half to anybody in the country is unacceptable. Those adjustments were crucial."

The Hoosiers didn't seem to use as many ball screens on the wings much in the second half, but when they did, Purdue defended them differently.

"Coach Painter did a great job of switching it up," Robbie Hummel said. "We started hedging a little flatter and getting back to Tom Pritchard, who was killing us in the first half. So we were able to cut him off a little bit and did a much better job staying on the ball, did a much better job help-side."

The result: Indiana shot 38 percent in the half and Purdue pulled out the victory.

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