Indiana women’s basketball entered its matinee matchup Sunday against Lipscomb University coming off a 112-79 victory against Murray State University on Friday.
With their dominant offensive showing alongside their poor defensive showing Friday now in the rearview mirror, the Hoosiers cruised to a 77-44 victory over Lipscomb on Sunday.
“We still have a ways to go,” Indiana head coach Teri Moren said postgame. “I have confidence that we’ll continue to get better, but it was a good win.”
Indiana began the contest with a quick basket from graduate student forward Mackenzie Holmes before Lipscomb struck back just eight seconds later with two points of its own. From there, the Hoosiers went on a 9-0 run to take an 11-2 lead.
The Bisons proceeded to go on an 8-2 run of their own to tighten the gap to 13-10 with just over three minutes remaining in the quarter.
Fifth-year senior guard Sara Scalia single-handedly willed Indiana to an 18-12 advantage after the opening frame, scoring the Hoosiers’ final 7 points with a layup, a pair of free throws and a 3-pointer.
Despite Lipscomb scoring first in the second frame, Indiana went on a 15-2 run over nearly seven minutes to take a 33-16 lead.
Although the Bisons ended the run with a pair of free throws from sophomore guard Molly Heard, the Hoosiers went on a 6-0 run over the final 24 seconds of the quarter to take a 39-18 lead into halftime.
Scalia and Holmes led all scorers at the break with 15 points apiece. The Hoosiers went 15-of-29 from the field in the opening half, going four-of-seven from 3-point range. Senior guard Sydney Parrish and sophomore forward Lilly Meister were the only other Hoosiers in the scoring column in the first half with 7 and 2, respectively.
Indiana outscored Lipscomb 19-13 in the third quarter with Scalia notching a pair of 3-pointers in the final three minutes of the frame. While the Hoosiers allowed Murray State University to score 35 points in the first half Friday, they held the Bisons to 31 points through three quarters Sunday.
With a 58-31 advantage entering the final quarter, Indiana pulled away for a 33-point victory behind dominant performances from Holmes and Scalia, totaling 23 and 24 points apiece. Scalia’s 24 points Sunday ties her Indiana career high as she scored 24 against Ohio State last season.
“Sara was really good tonight shooting the ball,” Moren said. “She had help — assists were up [to] 23. We’re sharing the ball well.”
Although Indiana was victorious, Parrish reaggravated a hamstring injury on a missed layup attempt that she previously suffered Friday against Murray State.
“She actually told [athletic trainer] Ben [Tate] that she felt fine,” Moren said. “It might’ve been the missed layup that hurt her.”
With Moren ripping her team’s defensive performance against the Racers — giving her squad a C grade — the Hoosiers responded Sunday holding the Bisons to 44 points. Lipscomb went 17-of-55 from the field alongside a six-of-18 showing from 3-point range.
“A little bit better tonight defensively from our group,” Moren said. “The defensive goal was to keep them under 60 and so we were able to do that. We wanted to keep them under five threes, they average right about nine threes, we wanted to keep them under five, so we missed that by a couple.”
The Hoosiers went 31-of-64 from the field, going nine-of-20 from beyond the arc.
Now standing at 3-1 this season, Indiana will set its sights on a 6 p.m. Thanksgiving matchup Thursday with the University of Tennessee in Fort Myers, Florida.
“We got a big week coming up this week,” Moren said. “So to have two games Friday and then today I thought were good for us, especially coming off of being on the west coast.”
With Tennessee possessing a pair of lengthy forwards much like Stanford University, Moren explained that the Hoosiers will need to be much better defensively against the Volunteers than they were against the Cardinal.
“It’ll be all of us,” Moren said. “We will all have to pack a lot of defense for that trip.”