Aug 11, 2014, 12:14 PM EDT
Indiana lost to the University on Ottawa in their second game of a five-game trip through Canada on Sunday afternoon.
The final score was 109-101, and before you ask, yes, this was a 40 minute basketball game. Troy Williams led the way with 27 points for the Hoosiers while James Blackmon Jr. chipped in with 20. It was the second straight game on this trip that the Hoosiers have broken the century mark, as they won their first game 110-70.
That’s probably a good sign, as this Indiana team has the pieces that could allow it to be an excellent team in transition. Stanford Robinson, who made the switch to become a right-handed shooter this offseason, and Troy Williams are the kind of athletic slashers that will be able to take advantage of fast break opportunities, the Hoosiers have a number of shooters that will be able to fill the lanes and, of course, there’s Yogi Ferrell.
Indiana had issues scoring the ball last season, and while those offensive numbers are impressive, giving up 109 points to a team from Canada is not exactly promising. Ottawa — whose nickname is the Gee Gees (!) — went 18-for-30 from three, led by a 7-for-8 performance from stretch four Vikas Gill. He finished with 21 points, but the Gee Gees were led by the back court tandem of Mike L’Africain (!!) and Johnny Berhanemeskel (!!!!!), who went for 27 points apiece.
Here are the guys from Inside The Hall, who were in attendance, with their take on the outcome:
Failing to challenge shots, particularly on the perimeter, was a theme of the day for IU and ultimately its undoing. The Gee Gees are a savvy, experienced group that can execute a game plan, so it’s not particularly alarming that on this afternoon they were able to pull out a victory.
All in all, it was an afternoon of growth and learning for a young Indiana team that needs it at this point in early August. Indiana still has a long way to go and is missing its primary post presence in Hanner Mosquera-Perea on the trip. But through two games in Canada, this team has showed off an offensive punch that will win games come winter provided the defense gets to where it needs to be.
Indiana is a young group playing their first basketball of the season while experimenting with lineups, set plays, and different looks offensively and defensively. For the Gee Gees, games like this are their Super Bowl, a chance to prove that they are legitimate basketball teams against some of the best American college programs in the country.
Remember, Wisconsin lost a game to another powerhouse Canadian program last summer, and they had a pretty good run in 2014 if I remember correctly.
The Hoosiers are without Hanner Mosque-Perea during this trip. Their next game will take place on Monday against Carleton, who knocked off the likes of TCU and Towson in addition to Wisconsin last summer.
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