The Journal Gazette
Monday, January 24, 2022 1:00 am

Michigan 80, Indiana 62

Hoosiers lack energy in loss to Wolverines

Suffer 1st home defeat this season

DYLAN SINN | The Journal Gazette

BLOOMINGTON – In the final minutes of Indiana's win over No. 4 Purdue on Thursday, Assembly Hall hummed with anticipation and the crowd rushed the court in celebration as the final buzzer sounded. 

In the final minutes of the Hoosiers' game against Michigan on Sunday, the near-capacity crowd was already heading for the exits.

Indiana failed to build on its performance against the Boilermakers, suffering its first loss at Assembly Hall this season, an 80-62 defeat at the hands of the Wolverines, who shot 11 of 17 from 3-point range and got 25 points from All-American center Hunter Dickinson to beat the Hoosiers a ninth consecutive time. 

The loss dropped the Hoosiers (14-5, 5-4 Big Ten) to 12-1 in Bloomington this season and was their first loss by double digits under coach Mike Woodson. Their last eight losses to the Wolverines (9-7, 3-3) have come by an average of 18 points.

Asked whether there was a letdown after beating the Boilermakers, Hoosiers forward Trayce Jackson-Davis, who led his team with 17 points and eight rebounds, did not deny it.

“That falls on us,” he said. “It's our home court, and ... it's unacceptable honestly to come out with no emotion and no drive, unlike when we were at the Purdue game.”

Woodson disagreed with Jackson-Davis's placement of blame, though not in his assessment of the Hoosiers' energy.

“When I look at the stat sheet and look at the plus/minus, everybody had minuses, so that just lets me know we weren't there tonight, which that's on me,” the first-year coach said. “It's just unacceptable, especially coming off a great game like the Purdue game.”

The Hoosiers were never really in the game, falling behind 17-7 at the 12:46 mark of the first half when Dickinson drilled a 3-pointer, Michigan's third of the game at that juncture.

The 7-foot-1 Wolverines sophomore center went 3 of 4 from long distance after coming into the game with just six career made 3s in 42 previous games.

Indiana struggled all afternoon to rotate on defense, and the lion's share of Michigan's 3-point attempts came from a wide-open shooter. The Hoosiers, meanwhile, went 5 of 19 from long distance, missing their first seven before Miller Kopp hit one with 2:29 left in the first half. 

“I thought our early shots that we had on the perimeter, we had so much pressure coming at us, instead of just pump faking and letting the guys go by, (Michigan) made us miss,” Woodson said. “They weren't hoping we missed, they made us miss shots. You reverse that, we were hoping that they missed shots instead of making them miss shots.”

Indiana trailed 38-30 at halftime after cutting into a 16-point deficit with a 9-0 run late in the opening period, but the Wolverines answered with a 12-2 spurt early in the second half to make it 52-36 with 15:52 left in the game.

Freshman Caleb Houstan hit a tough jumper to cap the Michigan run and the Hoosiers were never closer than nine again.

Houstan had 19 points and went 5 of 7 from beyond the arc. Indiana's Xavier Johnson had 14 points, six rebounds and six assists.

The Wolverines shot 57% from the field, the first time a team has topped 50% against the Hoosiers this season, while Indiana hit 39% of its field goals.

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