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NCAAB: Hoosiers Win Legends Classic Stay No. 1

The Indiana Hoosiers are the nation’s no. 1 NCAA basketball team and along with that is the challenge of living up to the expectations of teammates, coaches, spectators and writers. Indiana showed on Tuesday night why they are no.1 with a display of team basketball.

Five players on the Indiana team scored in double figures and the Hoosiers got what they were looking for, not just the win, but also a tough test and a Legends Classic championship. Indiana let the Georgetown Hoyas back in the game by giving up an eight point lead during the second half, but pulled away from the Hoyas in the overtime period to win 82-72.

Indiana knows as the season goes on they will have a huge target on their backs and every team facing them will play a bit harder trying to beat the country’s number one team. The biggest target of all will be squarely on the back and front of Cody Zeller. He is the preseason pick for Player of the Year and had 17 points and 8 boards in the final against Georgetown.

However, the Hoosiers are not by any means a one man show, as Jordan Hulls scored 17 as well and was awarded the Most Valuable Player award for the tournament.

Once the game got to overtime, the Hoyas missed their first seven shots from the field and were could not recover from the tenacious defense the Hoosiers played against them, At one point in the second half, the defense for Indiana held the Hoyas scoreless for over five minutes. However, Indiana could not ice the game because of the tough defense of the Hoyas.

Tom Crean, the head coach of Indiana said his team was just getting started. He said he has asked many of his players to do many different things and they are just trying to defend their man and work hard to get easy shots at the basket on offense.

The balance the team has is its most daunting challenge for opponents. The Hoosiers were no match for Georgetown’s size, so coach Crean played the game with speed to lessen the size difference. The Hoosiers’ ball movement and crisp passes helped the different scoring threats get easy looks at the basket.

If Indiana can maintain its balanced approach, they will see a lot more wins this season. They remain the no. 1 team in the nation for a reason and they know as a team that the only tournament that really counts is the one played during March and April and not in mid November.

Crean said his team does not dominate any one area in particular, but they have shown improvement in a number of areas already. He also said the team has a lot of room to improve and he is glad they do since it is just mid November. Since he said, it would be a long year if they had no room to improve this early in the season.

The Hoyas closed out regulation with a run of 8-1 and were helped with Indiana missing a pair of free throws. Otto Porter scored the final five points in regulation for Georgetown. Indiana had a shot to win, but it came after the buzzer and the game went to overtime, where the Hoyas fell apart and the Hoosiers came away with the win.

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