BLOOMINGTON, Ind. – Ohio State suffered another tight defeat at Indiana Tuesday, 72-69, in Assembly Hall. Ohio State hung tough the entire game, but could not muster enough plays in the second half to pull out the win.
The Buckeyes trailed for most of the game, but pulled within two points at 51-49 on a 3-point play by Evan Turner with just more than five minutes to play. From there, Ohio State chipped away at Indiana, but could not take the lead. Koufos nailed a 3-pointer to bring Ohio State within 63-59 with 45 seconds left, but the Hoosiers finished the game off at the foul line.
Despite shooting just 31 percent in the first half, Ohio State closed a one-time double-digit Indiana lead to just 32-30 after a 13-2 run that spanned the end of the first half and the start of the second.
Armon Bassett scored 23 points and Eric Gordon added 17 to lead the 12th-ranked Hoosiers (24-4, 13-2 Big Ten).
The Buckeyes (17-11, 8-7) were led by Kosta Koufos with 21 points. Ohio State lost its third straight, and has now lost five of seven.
Indiana broke out to a 10-3 lead with a huge early rebounding advantage and still led 30-21 at the half.
Then Koufos almost single-handedly led the Buckeyes back. He scored Ohio State’s first seven points in the second half and made it 34-32 with another basket with 15:13 left.
But the Hoosiers steadied themselves by scoring five straight points to make it 39-32 and finally put it away by hitting 10-of-12 free throws in the final 62 seconds.
The Associated Press contributed to this story
Indiana leads the all-time series with the Buckeyes by a 99-68margin and won both games against Ohio State this season. OSU hasplayed the Hoosiers more than any other team in the Big Ten.Indiana was only the sixth Buckeye opponent this season to score 70points. After trailing by 13 points with 2:35 to go in the first,Ohio State went on a 13-2 run in the remainder of the half and intothe second to cut the Indiana lead to two points (32-30) with 15:39remaining in the game. Ohio State got within one point (42-41) inthe second half, the closest the Buckeyes would get to theHoosiers. After struggling shooting in the first half (9-of-29, 31percent), the Buckeyes rebounded in the second half knocking down19-of-33 shots for 57.6 percent. Freshman center Kosta Koufosopened the scoring for the Buckeyes with his 15th 3-pointer of theseason. He hit another trey in the second half to tie his careerhigh going 2-of-3 from beyond the arc. Koufos led the Buckeyes inscoring with 21 points, hitting 8-of-18 field goals. It was his11th-consecutive game with double-digit scoring and the fourth timethis season he has reached the 20-point mark. Koufos had fourblocks for his second-highest total of the season. The Buckeyesrejected a total of eight IU shots. Evan Turner led the Buckeyes inrebounds with seven and added 13 points on 5-of-9 shooting. JamarButler had a team-high eight assists to increase his season totalto 176, just one shy of tying for third in the OSU record bookswith Kelvin Ransey (1980). Butler has dished out five of moreassists in the last six games in a row.