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4:00 PM PT5:00 PM MT6:00 PM CT7:00 PM ET12:00 PM GMT8:00 PM 北京时间5:00 PM MST7:00 PM EST, Dec 19, 2018
Assembly Hall, Bloomington, Indiana  Attendance: 13,915

Morgan leads No. 22 Indiana into matchup with Central Arkansas

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- Indiana senior forward Juwan Morgan is the model of consistency.

"Every day is the same," Hoosiers coach Archie Miller said. "Game day is no different than practice. Very few guys that can eliminate moodiness, the ability not to feel tired. For about two years straight, through about 150 practices, that's what I get to see every day. Not that his game days are perfect. But the guy plays the right way.

"To his credit, he's turned into a really good leader, vocally, he's the guy that is kind of really evolved over the last year and some change."

Entering Wednesday night's home game against Central Arkansas (4-6), Morgan is averaging 17.3 points and 7.6 rebounds for the No. 22 Hoosiers (9-2). Morgan was named the Big Ten Player of the Week on Monday after scoring 35 points in a 71-68 victory over Butler on Saturday in the Crossroads Classic in Indianapolis.

"He's vocal in huddles," Miller said of Morgan. "He's really an extension of the staff. If you can communicate something to him, he can get it communicated to the other guys. He's a smart, smart basketball player."

During the game, the 6-foot-8 Morgan became the 52nd Indiana player to top 1,000 career points. He is now 51st with 1,020.

"It's a great honor," Morgan said. "But, you know, it's just one small piece of the puzzle going forward."

The Hoosiers have now won four consecutive games (Northwestern, Penn State, Louisville and Butler) by three points or less.

"I just think we have a trust into each other, trust in the system," Morgan said. "We're all bought in. I think we'd like to get a couple, you know, wins where it's not within the last 10 seconds where we win.

"At the same time, you know, it's the ones that you grind out that are the best feeling. Come March time, those are the ones you're really going to need."

Freshman Romeo Langford, who leads the Hoosiers with a 17.7 scoring average, said Morgan's veteran leadership is crucial.

"We can lean on him when times get rough to maybe get us going in general," Langford said. "He's not one of the veterans that leads by example, he leads by example and his voice."

Central Arkansas provides one of the final tests of the non-conference season for Indiana.

New Mexico topped Central Arkansas 82-70 on Sunday in Albuquerque, N.M.

"I thought we played hard enough to win, I really did," Bears coach Russ Pennell said. "I thought that part was good. But when you play in an environment like this, I won't say you have to play a perfect game, but you can't miss layups. We had a stretch where we missed a layup, missed a dunk and then we missed a free throw.

"When their team is on a run, you have to do something to kind of keep the game within a reasonable striking distance. With as many 3s as they take, when you hold them to 30.6 percent, 11 of 36, that's pretty good. That's what you want against a team that shoots that many. But we just didn't get enough rebounds and I think that's the thing that did us in."

Khaleem Bennett, in foul trouble most of the game, led the Bears with 14 points, hitting 7 of 9 shots from the field,

"I think he had a really nice game," Pennell said of Bennett. "I wish he hadn't have got that third foul. I think that really hurt us because we had the jump (ball) and instead it put a third foul on him and put him on the bench for the rest of the half.

"And I was really happy with Jared Chatham (10 points). I think he's figuring it out, and I've got to figure out how to get him in the game more. Because his minutes and his production are really, really high. We've got to carve out more minutes for him. I'm proud of his effort and I think that bodes well for us down the line."

DeAndre Jones leads the Bears with a 13.9 scoring average, followed by Eddy Kayouloud at 13.1.

Updated December 18, 2018

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