Indiana Daily Student

IU finishes close win against Michigan

IU just needed one stop.

Up three points with 17.9 seconds left, the only thing the Hoosiers couldn’t allow was a 3-pointer. Michigan started swinging the ball around the perimeter.

Michigan Coach John Beilein said the plan was to get the ball to leading scorer Zak Irvin, but he couldn’t find space for a shot.

Everywhere the ball went, multiple white jerseys followed. First it swung to the right corner, then back around to the left, where guard Muhammad-Ali Abdur-Rahkman was uncovered.

As he lined up the game-tying shot, two Hoosiers closed out, but couldn’t get there in time.

He missed. A line drive of a jump shot clanged off the short side of the rim as the buzzer sounded. IU held on, taking a 70-67 win in Assembly Hall.

“I don’t think any of us would take this and call these our best games of the year, but I know our guys fought and (Beilein’s) guys fought,” Crean said. “And I think that’s the bottom line.”

IU controlled the game from the outset. It took the lead 95 seconds after the opening tip, never giving it back. The lead stretched to as many as 11 points in the second half before a late ?Michigan run.

With 78 seconds to play, IU led by six, only to allow Michigan within one shot of overtime. ?Crean said his team’s ability to adapt to the situation and change how it played won the game.

“You’re only as good as your ability to adjust,” he said. “You’re only as good as your ability to make the plays that need to be made when they need to ?be made.

Forward Troy Williams continued his breakout sophomore season as he led the Hoosiers with 20 points and eight rebounds. After giving the ball away four times in the first half, Williams didn’t commit a turnover in the second period. He did much of his scoring from the foul line, converting all eight of his free throw attempts.

Junior Yogi Ferrell added 18 points and six assists.

Freshman guard James Blackmon Jr. and junior forward Hanner Mosquera-Perea each made their return from injury Sunday. Blackmon, who scored 13 points in 30 minutes, had missed just one game with an injured ankle. Mosquera-Perea’s absence was notably longer.

He injured his right knee in practice Jan. 12. He missed seven games, which forced IU to play small lineups in lieu of his size. Mosquera-Perea played four minutes Sunday.

Crean said Mosquera-Perea hadn’t returned to full basketball activity until this weekend and that he just wasn’t physically ready to play a full game Sunday.

“Would it have been great to get him extended minutes? Yeah,” Crean said. “But he wasn’t ready to.”

The win moved IU to 17-7 on the season, 7-4 in the Big Ten, and ended the most grueling part of its schedule. Seven regular-season games remain — IU is projected to win six of those, according to kenpom.com.

“These last couple games we have, it’s going to define who we are,” Ferrell said. “That’s where teams get made.”

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