No. 19 IU women run away from Minnesota

MINNEAPOLIS, Minn. — The end of the first quarter was the stuff of coaching nightmares for Teri Moren.

First, her Hoosiers committed a shot-clock violation with three seconds, then they let Minnesota’s Alexia Smith get loose for a 3-pointer and the lead at the buzzer.

It would turn out to be the Gophers’ last gasp, as No. 19 Indiana opened the second quarter on a 14-2 run en route to a 75-54 Big Ten women’s basketball victory on Wednesday.

What made the difference?

“Just the message,” Moren said. “We have to quit letting people hang around.”

Indiana (4-2, 2-0 B1G) scored the first seven points of the second quarter, and after two Jasmine Powell free throws, scored the next seven for a double-digit lead at 29-18. Minnesota never got closer than nine again.

“Yeah, we were definitely upset that we let that happen (at the end of the first quarter),” IU senior Jaelynn Penn said. “It definitely added some fuel to come back out and play good defense.”

Indeed, the Gophers (1-4, 0-3) went the first 5:48 of the second without a field goal.

Meanwhile, the Hoosiers made things easy on themselves, scoring on the fastbreak and getting the ball into the lane.

“We were desperately trying to get some runouts,” Moren said. “They were going back in their zone, showed us a little bit of a 3-2, a matchup and then man, switching throughout the afternoon. When teams do that, it’s really hard to find some rhythm and pace, so we wanted to rely on early runouts, which required us to get stops, get reobunds, push the ball in transition. We encouraged our kids to get more of those.

“We settled in from there and were able to navigate some of their zone looks. Jaelynn hitting shots from outside was big as well.”

Penn started 1-of-5 from the field but finished 7-of-13, including four made 3s, to match Mackenzie Holmes for game-high scoring honors with 19 points.

Grace Berger added 13 points, seven during that second quarter, and Aleksa Gulbe pitched in 11 points and eight rebounds.

IU led 36-25 at halftime, then continued to pull away in the third quarter.

A 5-0 run got the Gophers with 42-32, but the Hoosiers responded with a Penn 3 to key an 8-0 run.

Minnesota scored on its final possession of the third quarter to get within 15, but Indiana did not commit a turnover in the fourth quarter and used a 10-1 run to start the final frame to douse all hopes of a comeback.

Powell, who came in averaging 18 points per game, finished with just 12 on 4-of-14 shooting with Penn drawing the primary duties.

“It was a really tough defensive assignment,” Penn said. “We threw a couple bodies at her (early), me and Keyanna Warthen. I think we did a pretty good job just trying to make her work to get the ball, try to wear her legs out a little bit because she’s super quick. I think we talked well on the screens, trying to keep our defensive assignments on those.”

Offensively, IU shot 45.9 percent from the field, collecting 22 assists on 28 made baskets, something Moren enjoyed much more than the end of the first quarter.

“You’re a veteran team, an experienced team, what you want them to do is execute, whether you’re at home or on the road,” the seven-year IU coach said. “We’re a much better basketball team when we share the ball. We have five guys out there that touch it, quick ball movement, find the good shot — not just the good shot but pass up a good shot for a great shot, so we’re much better offensively in rhythm (and) the pace is better when we do that.”

*Photo courtesy of Minnesota Athletics

11 comments

  1. I was very happy to see Jaelynn find her long range shot, and thrilled to see so many substitutions throughout the course of the game. Jaelynn is just so much more mobile adn athletic with her feet not hurting, and having that many capable players has got to be a bonus later in the season.
    I know Minnesota isn’t Tennessee, but it felt good nevertheless.

  2. I like the 3 balls going up in first quarter. As I stated earlier especially against teams like Minny and Illinois shoot 3’s during first quarter unless it’s a layup or IU Ladies fall behind by 10 points. It’s great practice to get better shooting. After first quarter then go to game plan. IU Ladies have to hit the 3 and put ball in basket to be successful.

  3. 22 assists on 28 made baskets is an outstanding stat to say the least. Lets not get to silly about this game, this was a game that you had to win against a team that has won one game this year. We rolled them just like we should have. good to see us beat a team the way we beat them simply because they are not very good. Go Hoosiers!!

  4. We will need to be hitting on all cylinders when we face teams like Maryland, NW, Rutgers and a couple others.

  5. And Northwestern always plays IU well and yes others as well. That’s why keep practicing shooting 3 ball in these kinds of games in quarter number 1.

  6. Actually, I suspect the Big10 is considering naming OSU the Big10 women’s champs this year if they remain undefeated due to Covid.

  7. Am I to assume Paige Price has not arrived as suspected on dec 26 , since there is no word and it should be big news on campus.

    1. Grace W. has not seen more time because, firstly, she’s a walk-on and IMO coaches feel obligated to “put first” their scholly players. Also, Grace W has become somewhat a known quantity versus the new faces – good speed with long arms always up for reliable active effort yielding good defense and quick-to-the-ball rebounding; only her shooting touch is in-game unproven, but last game was a good sign! Meanwhile, we have a deep bench but most need much more experience/game-time so coaches can garner the confidence to play them more&earlier against the other top teams in conference. Cordano-Hillary has hit the ground running, Patterson is awfully slow to recover to be game-ready helpful.
      Our best chance to beat temporarily short-handed Mary at their house appears to be to sub liberally and try to run them into tired-ground in second half. They’re such great shooters-scorers, while missing their top-freshman big, so we need to fast break them and out-rebound them and then out-defend them once they “lose their legs.”
      If you are physically overmatched to defend them, they can make 3’s at a free throw rate %-wise (21 of 31 in one game this year). If you press them for 40 minutes ala Rutgers, their ball security still thrives (in the hands of Owusu ), and they simply outscore you as needed in the final minutes.
      To win, we’d best keep the game in the 70’s. Matching them in the 80s-90’s is not likely, IMO.
      RE: PRICE: I think I was seeing Price on the bench but not in iniform, outer edge of huddles. If that was she, she looked big compared to her highlight reel, (at least 6’1”, and thick, for a guard. (Not as “thick” as in Owusu-thick, however. “No. No way, no,no, not, NO.”)

  8. If there would be Buckeye transfers to come as a result of the investigation etc…
    we can all take turns holding a place in line for Dorka Juhasz to czech in.

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