Ohio State picked a terrible time for its worst defensive performance of the season.
Indiana made 12-of-23 3-pointers, shot 59 percent from the field and posted the most points by a visiting team in Value City Arena's history on its way to a 96-92 victory over the Buckeyes on Saturday. The loss means Thad Matta's team finishes the 2016-17 regular season 17-14 overall and 7-11 in Big Ten play.
Four Hoosiers scored in double figures, led by Robert Johnson's 26. Indiana (17-14, 7-11) withstood a second-half run by Ohio State to end its regular season on a high note.
Ohio State made eight of its first 11 shots in the second half and C.J. Jackson's 3-pointer at the top of the key put the Buckeyes out front for the first time in the game 62-61 with 11:37 remaining. But back-to-back jumpers by Johnson and a pair of baskets by Juwan Morgan ballooned Indiana's lead back to 10. The Buckeyes got it to four with 42 seconds left but Indiana made enough free throws in the final minute to seal the win.
Indiana started the game white-hot from the field, connecting on 13 of its 15 shot attempts before the under-12 media timeout. The two times the Hoosiers missed a shot, they grabbed the rebounded and scored anyway as Ohio State's defense hardly provided much resistance. Indiana scored 34 points in the first 10 minutes of play.
|33–62 (53%)||FGM-FGA (PCT.)||34–58 (59%)|
|12–21 (35%)||3PM-3PA (PCT.)||12–23 (52%)|
|14–22 (64%)||FTM-FTA (PCT.)||16–22 (73%)|
The Hoosiers took a 54-40 lead into halftime behind Josh Newkirk, James Blackmon Jr., Thomas Bryant and Johnson. All four reached double figures in the opening 20 minutes and Newkirk hit a floater at the buzzer to extend the lead. Indiana made 7-of-12 shots from beyond the arc and hit 65 percent of its field goal attempts in the first half.
The Buckeyes found themselves down by as many as 18 points in the first half and the deficit could have been much worse had it not been for JaQuan Lyle. The sophomore scored 15 points off the bench on 6-of-9 shooting to keep Ohio State at least somewhat in striking distance.
But not near enough defense represented Ohio State undoing all afternoon on its way to a disappointing 11th conference loss.
Junior forward Jae'Sean Tate led Ohio State with 20 points. Trevor Thompson added 19, while Lyle and Jackson finished with 18 apiece. Senior Marc Loving brought his Ohio State career to a relatively unceremonious end with 11 points on 4-of-10 shooting with four turnovers.
Blackmon Jr. ended the game with 22 points for the Hoosiers. Newkirk added 18 while Bryant finished with 16 on an efficient 7-of-9 shooting.
The Buckeyes will play on Wednesday in the Big Ten Tournament in Washington D.C., either as the 11 or 12 seed. If Nebraska beats Michigan on Sunday night, the Buckeyes are the 12 seed and play at 4:30 p.m. If Ohio State is the 11 seed, it is scheduled to play at 7 p.m. at the Verizon Center.