Cody Zeller recorded a double-double as second-ranked Indiana beat host Northwestern 67-59.
EVANSTON, Ill. — Cody Zeller could sense panic setting in. Then, just in time, Indiana regained its composure.
Zeller scored 21 points and grabbed 13 rebounds as the No. 2 Hoosiers beat Northwestern 67-59 Sunday.
Jordan Hulls added 15 points, Christian Watford scored 14 and the Hoosiers (16-2 overall, 4-1 Big Ten Conference) hung on after things got tense down the stretch.
Indiana led by as many as 17 in the first half and was up 31-17 at the break.
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Northwestern (11-8, 2-4) responded with a 1-3-1 trap in the second half, leading to some rushed shots by Indiana. The Wildcats were down by five points three times, but the Hoosiers made seven of eight free throws in the final 57 seconds to prevail after seeing a six-game winning streak end with a loss to Wisconsin last week.
“They just kind of sped us up for a while,” Zeller said. “We were kind of panicked for a while. That’s what their defense kind of forces you to do. Once we started getting into the middle, getting to the baseline, then we started getting open shots.”
Zeller made 9 of 10 free throws and dominated inside as Indiana pounded the Wildcats 36-24 on the glass.
“It just seemed like he was everywhere,” Northwestern coach Bill Carmody said of Zeller. “He gets to the line a lot and makes his foul shots.”
Reggie Hearn scored 22 points for the Wildcats.
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Skylar Diggins scored 18 points and Natalie Achonwa contributed 16 points and 12 rebounds as the Fighting Irish (16-1, 5-0 Big East) defeated the Red Storm (9-7, 3-1).
At No. 5 Kentucky 97, Auburn 53
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