BLOOMINGTON, Ind. — Indiana finally has the horses to beat top-ranked Kentucky.
Christian Watford’s buzzer-beating 3-pointer from the left wing stood up to a replay review Saturday night, giving the Hoosiers a stunning 73-72 upset.
The lead changed hands five times in the final 121 seconds before Watford’s big shot set off a wild scene, with Indiana fans storming the court and crowding around players. Hoosiers coach Tom Cream and the officials stood side-by-side, pressed up against the scorer’s table to look at the replay.
When the officials counted the basket, Cream pumped his fist and four players wound up standing on top of the scorer’s table as fans partied on the court and the pep band continued to play its songs.
Watford finished with 20 points in Indiana’s first upset of a top-ranked team since taking down Duke in the 2002 NCAA tournament. The only other time they had beaten a No. 1 team in Bloomington was Jan. 7, 2001, when Kirk Hasten hit a buzzer-beater to knock off No. 1 Michigan State 59-58.
Victor Oladipo had 13 points and five Hoosiers wound up in double figures. Indiana is 9-0 for the first time since 1989-90.
Kentucky (8-1) was led by Doron Lamb with 19 points and Michael Kidd-Gilchrist with 18.
The Wildcats rallied twice from their largest deficit of the season (10 points) and appeared to have survived the scare when Darius Miller backed in for a dunk to give Kentucky a 69-68 lead with 2 minutes to go.
Watford answered with a layup for the Hoosiers, and then Indianapolis native Marquis Teague drove in for a layup to give Kentucky a 71-70 lead with 48.8 seconds left.
After Watford missed a 15-footer with 28 seconds left, Anthony Davis couldn’t seal it, missing the front end of a one-and-one.
Then, after an Indiana turnover, Lamb was fouled with 5.6 seconds to go but missed the first of two shots. After making the second, the Hoosiers rushed up the floor and Verdell Jones dumped the ball to the trailing Watford, who hit from the left wing to end it.
It was the biggest win in Cream’s four seasons in Bloomington and ended Kentucky’s three-game winning streak in the series.
Kentucky committed 17 turnovers and allowed a season-high point total.