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Trio of Hoosiers Lead Indiana All-Stars to Victory

Future Indiana Hoosier Romeo Langford talks to the media after the Indiana All-Stars defeated the Kentucky All-Stars 109-81. Langford led the Indiana All-Stars with 22 points and he, Rob Phinisee and Damezi Anderson will all report to Bloomington next week. (Austin Render/HN)

The three future Hoosiers captained the Indiana All-Stars Saturday night at Bankers Life Fieldhouse.

Romeo Langford, Robert Phinisee and Damezi Anderson all showed IU fans what they’re bringing to Bloomington this season in their 109-81 win over the Kentucky All-Stars.

Langford registered a game-high 22 points on 7-of-13 shooting. He also added eight rebounds, four assists and three steals.

After missing all six of his three-point attempts Friday night in the loss against the Kentucky All-Stars, Langford hit 2-of-5 from beyond the arc Saturday.

“Making my first shot, seeing the ball go in on my first shot was pretty cool, but really I just came out more focused and more locked in,” Langford said, “We didn’t want to be the team to go 0-2 versus Kentucky.”

IU ranked second to last in the Big Ten shooting 32-percent from three-point a season ago. This trio of newcomers can help improve the Hoosiers tremendously from range as they combined to shoot four-of-nine beyond the arc on Saturday.

The All-Star games also gave Hoosier fans a glimpse at what could be the backcourt for IU next season, with Phinisee at point guard and Langford at shooting guard. In Saturday’s game, the two combined for seven assists and just two turnovers.

“It was very fun. We’ve known each other since we were younger in AAU,” Phinisee said, “We just want to compete. We’re competitors. But off the court, we’re pretty good friends.”

Turnovers are another area IU could use some help with. The Hoosiers were 10thin the Big Ten in turnovers per game (12.5) and 11thin assist-to-turnover ratio (1.1).

Anderson ended the game with ten points and six rebounds in 18 minutes of action. Phinisee finished with three points, four rebounds and three assists in 21 minutes.

These players are highly thought of both with their play but also with their unselfishness. Not only are they good passers, but they are also unselfish with their minutes.

“All week long, these guys had great attitudes,” Head Coach Jim Shannon said, “There aren’t many D-1 players that will come by and say ‘Hey it’s okay if so-and-so gets some of my time.’”

Saturday also served as the final high school game of their careers. The freshmen will be reporting to Bloomington next week and Langford announced after the game that he’s heading to campus on Tuesday.

Shannon was emotional about getting to coach Langford one final time.

“I’m almost in tears, or I almost was,” Shannon said, “Part of it was because I had to let Romeo go tonight for good. That is it. I don’t think they’re going to let me coach anymore All-Star games, unless we can make one up.”

Before the men’s game, another future Hoosier, Grace Berger, took the floor for the women’s Kentucky All-Star team. She finished with 18 points and seven rebounds on six-of-11 shooting.

The future is bright for both the men’s and women’s teams in Bloomington this upcoming season. Langford, Phinisee and Anderson will join Jake Forrester and Jerome Hunter in a top-10 recruiting class.

Berger is the second ever five-star recruit in program history, joining the other, Jaelynn Penn, in Bloomington this fall. She is part of the No. 46 recruiting class in the nation.

Austin Render

I am a freshman from Fort Wayne, Indiana majoring in Sports Media. I work for IUSTV Sports, where I report on IU field hockey, women's basketball and baseball. I also call IU men's basketball games on WIUX Student Radio. You can reach me at austinrender99@gmail.com and you can follow me on Twitter @austinrender.

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