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    Short-Handed 'Cats Clipped by Hoosiers, 61-56

    Feb. 22, 2014

    Northwestern Indiana 61, Northwestern 56
    Welsh-Ryan Arena • Evanston, Ill. • Attendance: 8,117

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    EVANSTON, Ill. -- Tre Demps scored a game-high 19 points in his first start of the season and Alex Olah recorded his first career double-double with 17 points and 11 rebounds but a short-handed Northwestern squad came up just short against Indiana 61-56 Saturday night at Welsh-Ryan Arena.

    The Wildcats played the contest without the services of second-leading scorer JerShon Cobb who missed the game due to injury while forward Nikola Cerina had to sit out the contest while serving a one-game suspension.

    Regardless, the 'Cats battled back and forth with the Hoosiers during an entertaining first half. Despite battling not one but two sprained ankles, Olah gave NU an offensive lift in the opening stanza. The sophomore center squared off against freshman phenom Noah Vonleh and Olah tallied 12 points over the opening 20 minutes of play.

    Back-to-back 3-pointers by Drew Crawford and Demps put the Wildcats up 12-8 seven minutes into the contest. That marked the largest lead for either team over the opening half.

    Demps added nine first-half points and Crawford added seven but Indiana eventually took a 32-30 lead at the intermission following Vonleh's last-second basket.

    Northwestern struggled on the offensive end to begin the second half as the Hoosiers opened the half on a 12-2 run to go up 44-32 with 12:35 remaining. However, NU finally got things going and chipped away at the deficit.

    Two free throws by Crawford with 9:08 to go got the 'Cats within 45-39. Yogi Farrell hit a 3-pointer on the other end, but Kale Abrahamson answered with one of his own. Demps' basket with 2:21 left trimmed the IU lead to 54-50, but Troy Williams scored on a reverse layup off a nice pass from Vonleh to make it a six-point game.

    Demps hit one of two from the free throw line to trim it to five, but Will Sheehey's 3-pointer with 52 seconds left increased Indiana's lead to eight and iced the win for the visitors.

    Northwestern returns to action at 4 p.m. next Saturday as it travels to Nebraska.

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