Indiana Daily Student

Indiana women’s basketball ‘grinds it out’ to beat Norfolk State 72-42

<p>Guard Ali Patberg holds her follow through after making a 3-pointer Nov. 16, 2021. Patberg scored 17 points in Indiana women&#x27;s basketball&#x27;s 72-42 win over Norfolk State University.</p>

Guard Ali Patberg holds her follow through after making a 3-pointer Nov. 16, 2021. Patberg scored 17 points in Indiana women's basketball's 72-42 win over Norfolk State University.

Indiana women’s basketball continued its win streak Tuesday night with a strong 72-42 victory over Norfolk State University in Bloomington. Indiana improved to 3-0 on the season with the win.

“It was one of those games we just kind of had to grind out,” head coach Teri Moren said. “We were able to do that. I’m proud of our players for just staying the course even though things got a little ugly.”

In what is becoming a common occurrence, multiple Hoosiers scored double-digit points. Junior forward Mackenzie Holmes and senior forward Aleksa Gulbe both put up 22 with graduate student guard Ali Patberg not far behind at 17. 

Gulbe also led the team with 12 rebounds, marking her first double-double of the season and third of her career.

“At the end of the day, I’m ready to do whatever to help the team,” Gulbe said. “I’m always fighting for every rebound and always looking for open teammates.”

Gulbe, who went 3-4 on 3-pointers, had not made one before Tuesday. Beyond her scoring, she was also a force defensively for the Hoosiers.

“She can obviously score the ball,” Moren said. “She’s a really terrific defender off the ball. I love that she was all over the board tonight.”

Indiana got off to a slow start in the first quarter, and Moren said the team struggled to find any good rhythm offensively throughout the game despite taking a 39-21 lead into halftime. Beginning with over seven minutes left in the second quarter and continuing into the third, Indiana kept Norfolk State from scoring for over 10 minutes.

“The deal there is that you want to build on your lead and I didn’t feel like we did that,” Moren said. “I didn’t think we were manufacturing anything easily offensively. It seemed like everything was really difficult.

Gulbe was forced into six turnovers, followed by senior forward Grace Berger with four. Berger only scored 6 points in the game, but led Indiana with 11 assists.

“We always talk about being able to impact the game even if your shot’s not falling,” Moren said. “She’s going to facilitate, she’s going to find open players.”

The Hoosiers totaled 22 assists, exceeding their goal of 17 going into the game. Holmes said “sharing the sugar” is a point of emphasis for the team, and the team is always ready to forgo a good shot for a great one.

“It just goes to show the chemistry of our team and the veteran team that we have,” she said.

Graduate student guard Nicole Cardaño-Hillary was also almost nowhere to be found at the basket, going 0-5, but was reliable on the defensive end. Moren said the team can always count on her tenacious play style.

Norfolk State proved to be equally active on the court, but racked up 22 personal fouls. Indiana finished with nine, able to keep from retaliating with fouls of its own in the majority of plays.

“It’s very important to stay disciplined,” Gulbe said. “They have a great free-throw percentage going into this game and one of our goals was not to allow them to get those easy scores.”

Indiana will look to improve to 4-0 when it faces Quinnipiac University at 4 p.m. Saturday in Hamden, Connecticut.

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