No. 8 Purdue holds off Indiana, 78-75
BLOOMINGTON, Ind. (AP)—Purdue finally won a game in Bloomington after going a decade and then some without one.
Robbie Hummel and JaJuan Johnson each scored 21 points, and No. 8 Purdue held off its in-state rival 78-75 on Thursday night. The Boilermakers won a road game in the series for the first time since 1999 to snap an eight-game skid in Bloomington.
“So many players have passed through Purdue and never won here,” Johnson said. “For us to be able to do that was great.”
E’Twaun Moore added 14 points for Purdue (19-3, 7-3 Big Ten), which won its fifth straight heading into a showdown at conference leader Michigan State next Tuesday.
Moore said Purdue’s only concern was the Hoosiers.
“Anytime it’s a rivalry game, you definitely stay focused,” he said. “We definitely weren’t looking ahead. We knew it was going to be a hostile environment. We knew it was going to be a tough game.”
Indiana’s Verdell Jones III, who led the Hoosiers with 22 points, missed a long 3-pointer at the buzzer that could have forced overtime. Jones laid on the court for several seconds after he missed the shot.
“I thought it was going in,” he said.
Jones was the intended shooter. He pulled up and fired from about 40 feet.
“It was to go to me, but they sort of pinched on me, and I should have kicked it ahead,” he said.
The heavily favored Boilermakers never delivered the knockout blow to take the crowd out of the game. Hummel enjoyed the atmosphere, saying it was good for the rivalry. The rematch will be at Purdue on March 3.
“That’s how it’s expected to be,” Hummel said. “We wouldn’t expect any less coming here. They’ll get the same treatment when they come to West Lafayette.”
Tom Pritchard scored a season-high 13 points and Devan Dumes added 11 for Indiana (9-12, 3-6).
It was the second straight tough loss for the Hoosiers. Illinois beat Indiana 72-70 on Jan. 30 when Demetri McCamey made a floater at the buzzer.
“We practice late-game situations,” Indiana coach Tom Crean said. “We had a guy who had 22 points, with the ball in his hands at the end of the game, with other guys right there. It just came down to not getting enough stops.”
Purdue asserted itself in the early minutes of the second half. Johnson corralled an errant pass from Lewis Jackson, then powered the ball in and was fouled. The three-point play gave Purdue a 57-51 lead five minutes into the second half.
Indiana hung tough. Jones hit a 3-pointer to tie the game, then Jordan Hulls hit another to give Indiana a 69-66 lead with just under 6 minutes to play.
Hummel hit a 3-pointer with 2 minutes left, then Moore drained a floater in the lane with 1:17 remaining to give Purdue a 75-69 edge.
Jones made a 3-pointer with a minute to play to trim Purdue’s lead to 75-72 and end a scoring drought that lasted nearly five minutes.
Moore missed a short jumper and Indiana regained possession and a chance to tie. Jones left the ball short on a drive. Hummel rebounded, was fouled and made two free throws.
Jones made a three with 4.8 seconds left to trim Purdue’s advantage to 77-75. Purdue inbounded to Hummel, who was fouled with 4.1 seconds left. He missed the first free throw and made the second to give Jones the final shot.
Hummel was fouled again with 4.1 seconds left. He missed the first free throw and made the second to make it 78-75 and give Jones the final shot.
Pritchard averages just under five points per game, but he scored eight in the first 13 minutes. Indiana took a 31-28 lead on a 3-point play by Jones. The shot was part of a 10-2 run that gave the Hoosiers a 36-28 lead.
Indiana led 45-38 before Moore hit a 3-pointer and Barlow got a steal and layup in the final minute to cut the Hoosiers’ lead to two. Pritchard’s two-handed power dunk gave Indiana a 47-43 lead at halftime. It was the most points Purdue has allowed in a half this season and the most Indiana has scored in a half.
Pritchard went scoreless in the second half after Johnson stopped rotating away from him.
“I think it was just a defensive adjustment by coach Painter,” Johnson said. “In the first half, I was really hedging, which made it hard for me to get back to Pritchard down low.”
Hummel scored 15 points in the second half. He made 2 of 7 3-pointers overall, but the one with two minutes left was key.
“I didn’t shoot it great, but the guys kept finding me in places where I could go up and shoot, and where I thought I could score the basketball,” he said.
Hulls, Derek Elston and Jones each missed the front end of a 1-and-1 in the final 4:29.
“That’s really what the game came down to,” Hummel said.