Vandy beats Indiana behind Freije's 32 points and 13 rebounds
Posted: Tuesday November 25, 2003 1:31AM; Updated: Tuesday November 25, 2003 1:33AM
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) -- Jason Holwerda made a deal with Matt Freije during a timeout in Vanderbilt's game with Indiana Monday night.
"I told him, 'You do it on the offensive end, and I'll do it on the other end,"' Holwerda said.
They both made the deal stand up, as Freije scored a career-high 32 points, including 18-for-18 from the free-throw line, and Holwerda harassed Indiana guard Bracey Wright all night as Vanderbilt defeated the Hoosiers 73-60.
Freije set a single-game school record for free throws made, and he's 20-for-20 on the season. He also grabbed a career-high 13 rebounds.
"Matt Freije is a special player," said Vanderbilt head coach Kevin Stallings, whose team is 2-0. "You don't get to coach many like him."
Holwerda was charged with guarding Wright, who scored a career-high 31 points against Vanderbilt last year. Wright ended the night with 18 points and 11 rebounds, but he was just 4-for-9 from the floor.
"I talked to Holwerda after the game and told him he played great defense," Wright said.
Stallings said Vanderbilt's plan was to hold Wright under 20 points.
"We would have gone to a triangle-and-three if we had to, but he wasn't going to beat us if we could help it," Stallings said. "Jason did a great job of keeping the ball out of his hands."
Holwerda said he felt as if he had run "a marathon" after chasing Wright all night.
Freije scored 13 straight points for Vanderbilt in the second half to hold off Indiana (1-1) as it attempted to rally from a 10-point halftime deficit. Roderick Wilmont had 13 points and George Leach had 11 for Indiana.
"They are a well-prepared, disciplined basketball team," Indiana coach Mike Davis said. "We expected them to be good. They have a really experienced team and a good coach."
Freije's second-half run began with Vanderbilt up 44-37. He hit eight free throws, a layup and a 3-pointer to push Vanderbilt's lead to 57-47. From there, Indiana never got closer than eight points.
Vanderbilt broke open a close game with a 13-0 run early in the first half to take a 22-9 lead. Freije scored the first five points on two free throws and a 3-pointer, and Scott Hundley capped the run with another 3-pointer off a broken play, forcing an Indiana timeout.
Indiana would pull to within seven in the first half before a Freije 3-point play gave the Commodores a 31-21 lead at halftime. Indiana shot just 5-for-25 in the first half and had seven shots blocked.
Freije shot poorly in the first half -- hitting 2 of 10 shots -- but he was 7-for-7 at the line and had 12 points at halftime. "I felt like I forced a lot of bad shots," Freije said. "Coach pulled me aside and told me to settle down. After that, I just started throwing them in."
Vanderbilt is now 2-6 against Indiana, recording its first victory since the 1986-87 season when the Hoosiers won the national championship.