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Northwestern-Indiana final score: Unable to solve the No. 25 Hoosiers' offensive attack, Northwestern falls 89-57

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Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. — From the bench, Chris Collins could only watch, helplessly.

No. 25 Indiana, carrying the weight of an 11-game win streak and an undefeated Big Ten record, played without restriction, busting out to a 10-0 lead Saturday over Northwestern in just over three minutes. The Wildcats (15-6, 3-5 Big Ten) never solved the Hoosiers' vaunted offensive attack, surrendering 1.328 points per possession in the team's 89-57 defeat.

Northwestern seemed to weather the storm after Tom Crean's bunch jumped out to the early lead. Collins opted to go big with both Alex Olah and Dererk Pardon in the game, a lineup he first used in Tuesday night's overtime loss at No. 4 Maryland. The Wildcats cut the deficit to just four (13-9) with 13:56 left in the opening half.

But Indiana (17-3, 7-0) and its perimeter-oriented attack continued to tear up Northwestern's matchup zone throughout the contest. From the tip, the Wildcats rotations were far too late and often had multiple players guarding the ball and leaving open shooters around the perimeter. The Hoosiers finished the game 13 of 28 from three.

There's a reason no one else in the country plays the same defense Northwestern has over the past few weeks. Its success relies so much on players making reads and communicating those reads to teammates in the blink of an eye. So much can go wrong so quickly. All Indiana did was spread the floor with shooters, often playing with five guys on the perimeter. The Wildcats frequently got stretched too thin and were unable to scramble back to contain the likes of Yogi Ferrel, Robert Johnson and Collin Hartman, each of whom made 3 threes.

Offensively, Northwestern's output was generated mainly by the team's two four-year contributors: Tre Demps and Alex Olah. Demps, sporting a hairless look for the first time all season, scored 17 points and looked the most confident he has in a while. Olah, who is still working his way back from a stress fracture in his foot, came off the bench to score a team-high 19 points on 9 of 12 shooting. Aside from the two veterans, the rest of the team combined for just 21 points, but just 2 in the first half. Bryant McIntosh was the first Northwestern player aside from Olah and Demps to score with just under five minutes left in the first half and Indiana leading 30-22.

Historically, Olah has played well against Indiana. Since his sophomore season, the big man has averaged over 15 points per game in four contests. On Saturday, the senior did the vast majority of his work in the post, showing off a plethora of moves including drop steps and spins to finish effectively with both hands. Demps, especially in the first half, finally found a shooting groove. He didn't settle for threes as he looked to attack the paint, knocking in a few floaters along with his 3 three-pointers.

The Wildcats, losers of three straight and five of their last seven, host No. 11 Michigan State on Thursday, Jan. 28.