MUNCIE, Indiana (Ticker) -- Wherever Mike Davis was watching, he had to be impressed with Bracey Wright.
Wright matched his season high with 31 points as No. 18 Indiana used a late surge to pull away from Ball State for a 76-62 victory without its coach.
Davis served a one-game suspension from the Big Ten Conference for running onto the court in the waning seconds of last week's loss to Kentucky. Ironically, he was protesting a non-call of a foul against Wright, his star freshman.
For this intrastate matchup, assistant John Treloar guided the Hoosiers, but Wright led them. He made 11-of-18 shots, including 5-of-10 3-pointers, and spearheaded a solid defensive effort.
"Wright played great on the defensive end as well as the offensive side," Trolear said.
The Texas native tied his season high established against Vanderbilt on December 9, when he became the first IU freshman since A.J. Guyton to eclipse 30 points.
Despite Wright's brilliance, the Hoosiers (9-2) found themselves nursing just a 56-53 lead with under 6 1/2 minutes to play before putting together a 13-0 surge to snap a two-game slide.
Kyle Hornsby added 14 points for Indiana, which has won the last 13 meetings with Ball State and holds a 16-1 lead in the all-time series.
The Hoosiers also did a good job on Chris Williams, limiting him to 11 points. Williams came in as the Mid-American Conference's leading scorer at 23.1 points per game but made just 2-of-15 shots.
"I think I let my team down more than myself tonight," Williams said. "They were expecting me to be a scorer out there and I was not able to hit my shots."
Cameron Echols scored 24 points for the Cardinals (5-5), who have lost three in a row. They hosted Indiana for the first time since 1973 and notched their lone win in the series in 1937.
"I'm proud of our guys," Ball State coach Tim Buckley said. "We followed the game plan for 30 minutes. We just could not finish out the game."
A jumper by Echols pulled the Cardinals within three points with 6:23 remaining before Wright took charge. He answered with a pair of 3-pointers around a layup by A.J. Moye, pushing the lead to 64-53 with 5:13 to go.
Jeff Newton made two free throws before Wright converted a three-point play to cap the burst at 69-53 with 3:24 left. Ball State got no closer than 11 points thereafter.
"Ball State was tough, but when they came back, we were able to answer," Trolear said.
Newton had 11 points and 10 rebounds and Tom Coverdale scored 10 points for Indiana, which shot 50 percent (27-of-54) and held a 37-25 advantage on the glass.
Kevin Cates swept nine boards for Ball State, which shot 42 percent (23-of-55). The Cardinals made just three 3-pointers to nine for the Hoosiers.
Wright and Hornsby scored 10 points each in the first half as Indiana grabbed a 35-32 lead. Echols kept the Cardinals close with 12 points.