WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. – Purdue coach Matt Painter was unusually short when asked about the difference between Saturday's game against Indiana and those in the recent past.
Victor Oladipo scored a career-high 23 points to help No. 20 Indiana defeat the Boilermakers 78-61 on Saturday night and break a five-game losing streak in the series. Purdue hadn't lost to Indiana since 2008, and seniors Lewis Jackson and Ryne Smith lost to the Hoosiers for the first time in their careers.
Though Painter's quick answer ended the media session, his discussions with his team about lack of effort likely have just begun. He felt the Boilermakers failed to show up for a sellout crowd at Mackey Arena that was boisterous a solid half hour before tip-off.
"You're going to struggle, I just want guys to stay together and fight," he said. "At times when we have a bad call or a couple plays go against us, you can see it in our body language. We drop our head and walk down the court."
Cody Zeller had 16 points and eight rebounds and freshman Remy Abell scored a season-best 13 points for the Hoosiers (18-6, 6-6 Big Ten). Verdell Jones III, one of Indiana's primary ballhandlers, missed the game with a shoulder injury.
The Hoosiers had lost five of their previous seven games, but claimed just their fourth road win of the season.
Robbie Hummel had 16 points, 10 rebounds and five blocks to lead Purdue. The senior came up limping after he went to the ground in the final minutes, but he played through it. Hummel missed last season with a torn ACL in his right knee. After the game, he said he was fine.
D.J. Byrd scored 15 points and Kelsey Barlow added 12 for the Boilermakers (15-8, 5-5).
Purdue led 13-8 on a dunk by Jacob Lawson, but Indiana scored the next 13 points to give the Hoosiers a 21-13 lead. A 3-pointer by Will Sheehey gave Indiana a 31-22 lead, and the Hoosiers extended their advantage to 33-22 at halftime. Purdue shot 20 percent from the field in the first half and missed all 11 of its 3-point tries. The Boilermakers didn't have a turnover before the break, but the Hoosiers beat them 34-22 on the boards.
Purdue started off hot in the second half, but Indiana rallied. A layup by Abell in traffic pushed the Hoosiers' lead to 52-43 with just over 12 minutes to go.
A bucket by Hummel cut Indiana's lead to 58-53. The Boilermakers had a chance to cut their deficit to two points when Hummel stole the ball and Jackson drove hard for a layup. Sheehey blocked his shot from behind, Indiana's Christian Watford rebounded and he was fouled. He made both free throws to give the Hoosiers a 67-61 lead with 2:15 remaining.
Abell's 3-pointer with 1:27 remaining pushed Indiana's lead to 70-61.
It all was enough for Painter to say his team didn't deserve to win.
"We just have to be tougher, we have to be consistent and knock down a shot or two," he said.
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