After a six-month negotiation process in 2015, Fort Wayne (formerly IPFW) convinced Indiana to agree to a home-and-home basketball series that would bring the Hoosiers to Memorial Coliseum, a building best known for hosting the Fort Wayne Mad Ants of the NBA D-League and the Fort Wayne Derby Girls of the Women’s Flat Track Derby Association Division 2.
It’s a decision that Tom Crean is now regretting.
Despite nearly going the final 10 minutes of regulation without a field goal, Fort Wayne was able to outlast No. 3 Indiana in overtime, 71-68, to notch what is without a doubt the biggest victory in program history. The Mastodons had been 0-9 all-time against top-25 opponents.
It was a victory that stunned the crowd of about 13,000, many of whom were supporting the “road” team.
The surrender cobra has no age limit #Hoosiers pic.twitter.com/hRrHZL4mpe— CJ Fogler (@cjzero) November 23, 2016
Indiana appeared to have momentum heading into the extra period after Thomas Bryant’s two free throws tied the game and the Hoosiers kept Fort Wayne from winning at the buzzer. That energy failed to carry over, however, as Robert Johnson’s three-pointer on IU’s first overtime possession provided their final points of the game.
The hosts were then able to do just enough to land third-year head coach Jon Coffman his biggest victory to date.
Pretty great stuff here from IPFW's @coachcoffman. https://t.co/wCuQL0r4fi— Brent Yarina (@BTNBrentYarina) November 23, 2016
Junior guard Bryson Scott played hero for Fort Wayne, scoring a game-high 18 points to go with 12 rebounds, three assists, and three steals. The victory improved the Mastodons, the preseason favorites in the Summit League, to 3-2 on the young season. Indiana dropped to 3-1.
Revenge won’t come for Indiana until at least 2018, which is when the Hoosiers are scheduled to host Fort Wayne at Assembly Hall in Bloomington.