SIMON SKJODT ASSEMBLY HALL (IUSTV Sports) – It was quite the turnaround for the Hoosiers after their dramatic loss to then #15 ranked Stanford, taking down Murray State 112-79 at home.
After what Indiana head coach Teri Moren called an “old-fashioned butt-kicking” on the west coast last week, Indiana had some time to tighten up their defense and get out better in transitions for a full game.
“I think all around, we were more aggressive, more confident” said All-American Mackenzie Holmes, “that all came from the defensive pressure we put on them, trying to get our gaps, knowing our assignments, talking, all of those things.”
While they have made progress on the defensive end of the ball, Moren made it very clear post-game that they are not nearly where they would like to be yet.
“Glad we won and put some points up on the board, but to give up 79 points, I know the last one banked in,” said Moren, “but from a performance standpoint, if I had a grade defensively, I’d give us a C, a solid C.”
On the other side of the ball, the offensive contribution was well-rounded for Indiana tonight. Sara Scalia lead the way with 22 points and 4 rebounds and five other Hoosiers recorded double digits.
While she only went 2 for 6 on the three-point line, Scalia was able to find other ways to contribute to the board, including going 8 for 8 on the free throw line.
“Just continuing to have confidence in myself, my shot, the work I put in, and there’s really not much else to it other than, you know, I’ve worked to where I am today,” Scalia regarding her ability to keep moving when her shot isn’t falling from the three-point line.
The absence of Grace Berger has been an adjustment for Indiana. Moren acknowledged that they are “not the same team as last year,” but that is also not stopping them from maintaining a growth mindset and acknowledging key plays during these earlier match-ups.
“You gotta keep showing them the championship plays that they do make. This is what it looks like. This is what we need, but we need more of these,” says Moren, “I don’t want to beat them down.”
Indiana will get a chance to continue fine tune these elements of their game again on Sunday at Assembly Hall, where they will face off against Lipscomb at 2pm EST.