Indiana Daily Student

Women rebound from loss

Minnesota stayed competitive with the women's basketball team Thursday, matching basket for basket with only a minute left.\nBut they were already down by 10.\nAnd it was only the first half.\nAfter a humbling loss to sixth-ranked Purdue, which leads the Big Ten, the Hoosiers (13-3, 4-1 Big Ten) were back in their old form Thursday at Assembly Hall. Standing pat at second place in the Big Ten, they routed Minnesota (7-8, 0-4), 92-64.\nComing into the Purdue game, the Hoosiers seemed poised for a top-25 Associated Press ranking. In the latest poll, they came in 27th in the country, garnering 40 votes.\nMore than that, an upset would have established them as a legitimate contender for the Big Ten title, having finished last season 10-18.\nWith 3,400 fans in attendance -- the largest draw they've had in years -- the Hoosiers played the aggressive defense they've been playing all season, forcing 21 turnovers and holding the powerhouse Boilermakers to 67 points.\nIt came as no surprise.\nCoach Kathi Bennett signed on with the program with a reputation of turnaround and coaxing solid defensive performances from players.\nBut the Hoosiers faltered on the offensive end, shooting 43 percent from the field and 34 percent from three-point range. They couldn't handle the Boilermakers' full-court press, turning over the ball 18 times.\nThey resolved any questions about their offensive potency Thursday, lighting up the scoreboard with 92 points. It's a season high, more than the 82 points they put up against Long Beach State.\nThe Hoosiers finished the game shooting 57 percent from the field and 58 percent from three-point range. Although they shot 67 percent in the first half, Bennett said she didn't think they had many good looks.\n"I didn't think our shot selection was the greatest," she said. "I just want us to make good decisions."\nTwo-time Big Ten Player of the Week Jill Chapman, the junior center who leads the Hoosiers in points and rebounds per game, scored 19. But overshadowing Chapman was junior point guard Heather Cassady, who posted a career-high 27 points. Her shots just kept dropping, as she went 9 of 13 from the field and 4 of 5 from three-point range.\n"Offensively, we were playing a lot better," she said. "We were coming off screens. And we were able to kick the ball out a lot more."\nShe said she was glad to help her team get back in stride.\n"Of course, Minnesota plays a different style of ball than Purdue," she said. "But any game's a confidence-booster. We'll be more ready when we play good teams."\nDick Bennett, former Wisconsin coach and Bennett's father, has been in town all week to watch his daughter. Sitting at courtside, he often shouted at the officials.

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