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IU breezes past Kennesaw State

BLOOMINGTON – Yogi Ferrell had 25 points while Noah Vonleh added 14 points and nine rebounds as Indiana easily defeated Kennesaw State 90-66 on Sunday afternoon.

The Hoosiers (10-3), who open Big Ten play on New Year’s Eve at Illinois, shot a season-best 62.7 percent in their nonconference finale. Ferrell chipped in six assists and five rebounds while shooting 8 for 12. Will Sheehey scored 15 points to help secure Indiana’s third straight season with at least 10 non-league victories.

Orlando Coleman had 18 points and nine rebounds for the Owls (3-10). Kennesaw State was outrebounded 41-29 and committed 18 turnovers in its fifth straight loss.

Indiana, outside the national rankings after spending much of last season at No. 1, won for the second time in three days. The Hoosiers extended their nonconference home winning streak to 38. They scored a season-high 58 points in the paint and were never challenged.

The Owls gained their last lead, 6-4, on a follow by Coleman at 17:03 of the first half, but quickly showed they were in over their heads.

Ferrell then led the Hoosiers on a 12-0 run, scoring eight straight points and feeding Sheehey for a lay-in to give Indiana a 16-6 lead with 14:25 left. From there the Hoosiers asserted firm control.

They went ahead by double figures midway through the period on back-to-back dunks by Luke Fischer, then used a 12-3 spurt to lead 34-18. After Charlie Byers scored for Kennesaw State, Indiana reeled off eight unanswered points to make it 42-20 with 1:48 left in the half.

The Hoosiers led 43-25 at intermission and sent Kennesaw State reeling as soon as the second half began, scoring on five of their first six possessions. Ferrell boosted the Indiana lead to 62-34 by securing a rebound with one hand behind his back, finishing a transition layup through contact and then making the free throw to complete the three-point play.

Indiana reached the 90-point plateau for the fifth time this season. Fischer, a freshman center making a case for more regular playing time, had 10 points and three of Indiana’s five blocks. The Hoosiers were just 3 of 11 on 3-pointers, with Ferrell owning all three makes, but went 23 of 35 at the foul line.

After 55 losses over the past two seasons, Kennesaw State is looking for slight improvement ahead of play in the Atlantic Sun Conference. The Owls, who still have two games left on a seven-game road trip, have now given up 70 or more points seven times.

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