INDIANAPOLIS -- Northwestern's Michael Thompson scored 11 of his 16 points during a late run Thursday, leading the Wildcats past Indiana 73-58 in the first round of the Big Ten tournament.
Seventh-seeded Northwestern (20-12) clinched its first 20-win season in school history and has a date with Purdue (No. 5 ESPN/USA Today, No. 6 AP) in Friday's quarterfinals. The Boilermakers are the second seed after sharing the regular-season title with Ohio State (No. 7 ESPN/USA Today, No. 5 AP) and No. 11 Michigan State.It was the Wildcats' first conference tourney win since March 10, 2005.Verdell Jones scored 20 points to lead Indiana (10-21), which lost 12 of its last 13 games. The Hoosiers also have five straight losses in Big Ten tourney play.Indiana led for the first 32 minutes, but Thompson's flurry ignited a 20-5 run that turned a 45-39 Northwestern deficit into a 59-50 lead with 4:53 left and the Hoosiers never recovered.