____simple_html_dom__voku__html_wrapper____>The winning streak was short-lived.After taking Wisconsin down to the wire and pulling off a 62-60 victory Thursday — the team’s first win in 15 Big Ten games this season — the IU women’s basketball team (6-23, 1-15) fell 90-58 to Purdue (21-8, 11-5) on Sunday at Mackey Arena during its final regular season game.The Hoosiers found themselves behind early, as the Boilermakers had a 9-2 lead fewer than four minutes into the game. IU tried to battle back, staying within 12 points until 6:43 in the first half.The Boiler defense kept IU nearly scoreless for four minutes while it went on a 12-point run, extending the lead to 22 and putting the game out of reach at 41-19.IU Coach Felisha Legette-Jack said she felt Purdue’s runs during the game were due to the added energy at Mackey Arena for the Boilermakers’ senior night, but she thought it was a great experience for her team to play in.“You want that kind of environment,” she said. “With a young team like that, you don’t run away from that. That’s the best it gets. You don’t avoid that kind of atmosphere. You want that so we can know what it’s supposed to feel like, so when we get in that kind of atmosphere, it’s not going to scare us.”Junior forward Aulani Sinclair led IU with nine points in the first half, and freshman guard Candyce Ussery scored a seven, more than double her season average of 2.6 points per game.Indiana opened the second half by trading baskets with Purdue, cutting the lead to as few as 19 points. But the Hoosiers again fell victim to a scoring drought as Purdue scored 11 straight points during about a two-minute span, pushing the team’s lead to more than 30 for the first time in the game.IU’s deficit would rise to as many as 36 before a seven-point IU run sparked by two straight baskets from junior center Sasha Chaplin. After a Big Ten season that included only one win, Legette-Jack said the struggles of this season’s conference play happened for a reason.“God is such a special God that he blessed us with a special opportunity with this situation,” Legette-Jack said. “He believes we can handle it, and we’re doing it with dignity and as much grace as we can.“We certainly are here to win, and I came to IU to win and pursue championships, but if you can’t win, you’ve certainly got to do what you can to build the program.”Chaplin led the Hoosiers in scoring with 15 points during only 17 minutes of playing time. Sinclair, who played the entire game, added 14 points, along with 10 from Ussery, her career high. In the last regular season game of their careers, seniors Danilsa Andujar and Alisha Goodwin each scored a single basket and, along with Goodwin’s three free throws, combined for seven points.With their regular season schedule complete, the Hoosiers will now move on to the Big Ten postseason tournament in Indianapolis, where they will play the conference’s No. 5 seed in the tournament Thursday.
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____simple_html_dom__voku__html_wrapper____>After an 82-60 drubbing at home to its in-state rival, then-No. 13 Purdue, more than a month ago, the IU women’s basketball team was 0-6 in the Big Ten and struggled to compete in a conference with four teams ranked in the top 25.But now, after their first win in almost two months on Thursday night, the Hoosiers hope to extend their win streak against Purdue.The Boilermakers have dropped nine spots in the AP poll and lost three of their last four games when they face off in Mackey Arena on Sunday at noon.The tough news, though, is that the Hoosiers must fight for a win against Purdue without their leading scorer after the team’s second season-ending injury.The team announced Tuesday that its leading scorer, junior Jasmine McGhee, will sit out the remainder of the regular season, as well as the Big Ten Tournament, with a stress fracture in her foot.IU will now have to rely on the rest of the team, particularly junior forward Aulani Sinclair, to make up for McGhee’s scoring load, an average of 12.6 points per game.IU Coach Felisha Legette-Jack said the key to keep Sinclair, who has averaged 19 points the past four games, a powerful scoring threat is a strong inside presence from the Hoosiers’ forwards and centers.“If our post players get a little bit better in the next couple games, you’re going to see Sinclair score about 30 points,” Legette-Jack said. “She can flat-out score, and we’ve never denied that, but when you’ve got two or three people on you, it’s very difficult to score.“But if you’ve got a player one-on-one, like Sinclair, she can easily go for 30, and that’s our hope. That someone can show up under the post so they can’t double up on Aulani.”Legette-Jack added that all season long, she’s liked the way her team has performed in practice, yet when it has come to game time, the Hoosiers have faltered, until Thursday night. In several games, Indiana has stayed close or even led at halftime, only to fall victim to a long scoring drought or allow one conference opponent or another to go on a big run.Junior center Sasha Chaplin said what she thought was her team’s biggest flaw: not being able to play a full game.“I think to get a win, we need overall effort from everyone on the team: the guards, post players, the bench, the whole coaching staff, just the team as a whole to give us that overall effort and just bring that energy for us to have that momentum going into our last game,” Chaplin said. “We just have to go out there and play a consistent 40 minutes of basketball.”
____simple_html_dom__voku__html_wrapper____>The Runners’ Council of the 2012 Little Fifty race, the event set to kick off this year’s week of Little 500 festivities, will have a callout meeting Thursday for those interested in participating in the 10th anniversary of the inaugural Little Fifty.At the meeting, which will begin at 8:30 p.m. in Kelley Business School 223, the council will discuss qualifications, the team registration process and deadlines, runner eligibility and a new blog at littlefiftyblog.blogspot.com set up to help fellow runners communicate about training plans and running routes.This year’s meeting and race will center around one big change: the move of the race from the normal spot of Thursday night to the Sunday before Little 500 week.Junior Jarrett Smith, a veteran Little Fifty racer and now a member of the Little Fifty Runners’ Council, said the change was made to avoid the other festivities of the week and with the hope of boosting attendance.“We’re trying to get as big a turnout as possible, and we thought it would be great to kick off the Little 500 week with this race and set the tone,” Smith said. “We didn’t want to compete with different concerts and other events going on that week, and we’re hoping this Sunday-night time will allow for as much participation as possible, both by the athletes and the fans.”Smith, who ran both track and cross country in high school, encouraged past competitors and prospective racers to come to the meeting in hopes they will find the type of camaraderie Smith found last year while training for the race.“It was just another avenue where I found I could get involved in the week,” Smith said. “I missed the team atmosphere and that aspect of organized sports, and this has allowed me to train with the team while competing against other teams and kind of get some of that camaraderie and structure back that I loved with sports.”
____simple_html_dom__voku__html_wrapper____>Losing on a last-second shot in front of a home crowd could be seen as devastating to some teams. But for the IU women’s basketball team, it’s only one loss in a season filled with 20, including 12 straight to conference opponents and a winless Big Ten record.Even as the Hoosiers travel Thursday night to Columbus, Ohio, to take on the No. 9 Ohio State Buckeyes, who are currently second in the Big Ten standings, IU women’s basketball Coach Felisha Legette-Jack’s players sound as positive and as confident as ever.“Our effort and heart is there more now than it’s ever been, despite our record,” junior forward Aulani Sinclair said. “We come out with the hunger we need to have, and whether it’s with rebounding, which we’ve improved on the whole year, or whether it’s getting a defensive stop everyday in practice, it means more every day.“We have more hunger and more resilience to get the next win than ever.”The Hoosiers put up a fight in the first half of their first meeting against the Buckeyes on Jan. 26 in Assembly Hall. IU led by as many as eight points in the first 20 minutes, and it still had a one-point lead at halftime.But Ohio State scored the first 13 points of the second half, all but destroying any hopes of the Hoosiers stealing an upset win as the Buckeyes went on to win 73-55.Though the Hoosiers were shut down during those opening minutes of the second half during that game, Legette-Jack said the Hoosiers might have recently played against a more challenging defense. After the Illinois loss Sunday, Legette-Jack touted the Fighting Illini as one of, if not the best defensive team in the Big Ten, which she said could be good preparation to face the Buckeyes.“They (Illinois) are one of the best defensive teams in our conference,” she said. “It’s going to be fun to play our next Big Ten opponent in Ohio State, but we aren’t going to see that kind of pressure from any other team,” Legette-Jack said.But whether the Hoosiers pull off an upset victory Thursday against the Buckeyes or fail to win another game this season, Legette-Jack said her team will continue to fight just as hard every day, both in practice and during the rest of its battles in the Big Ten.“I couldn’t be more proud of my team than I am today,” Legette-Jack said. “They play with such resiliency, and they fight to try and get better every single day. No one would ever know that we’ve lost 20 games already by the way we practice every day.“I don’t know what this mess is all about, but I do know one thing: There is no quit in us.”
Last-second shot sinks Hoosiers’ chances at first Big Ten victory against Illini during ‘THINK PINK’ game
____simple_html_dom__voku__html_wrapper____>The Indiana women’s basketball team fell 61-60 to Illinois (10-16, 4-9) on a last-second lay-in by the Fighting Illini’s Lydia McCully Sunday. But on “THINK PINK” day at Assembly Hall, IU Coach Felisha Legette-Jack said she had the bigger picture in mind.“At the end of the day, it’s a one-shot situation,” Legette-Jack said. “If we get the rebound, we’re celebrating, and if we don’t get the rebound, we’re celebrating because we’re fighting breast cancer.”The loss was especially hard to take for Legette-Jack, though, who lost her father 10 years ago this month after a bout with throat cancer, she said. But despite the team’s loss, she and her players said they’re just playing a game, but other people might be out there fighting for their lives.“It’s not about a win or a loss or who had 61 or who had 60,” Legette-Jack said. “We’re bringing attention to something deadly and totally unforgiving in breast cancer.“I know how hard these survivors have to fight, and I know how tough it can be, but my energy is toward that more than anything.”IU (5-20, 0-12) jumped to a 12-6 lead off of two baskets each from senior forward Danilsa Andujar and junior forward Aulani Sinclair. The Hoosiers would then stretch their lead to as much as 11 off an 11-6 run.But Illinois would go on a 14-2 run of its own to take the lead at 26-25 with 4:06 left in the half. The teams would then trade baskets for the final four minutes of the half before Illinois’s Karisma Penn hit a last-second floater in the lane to take the lead 33-32 into the locker room. Penn led all scorers with a game-high 23 points, including 13 in the first half.After a slow start to the first half that saw both teams turn the ball over twice in their first two possessions, Indiana tied it up 38-38 with more than 14 minutes remaining.Illinois followed with a 10-2 run, during which the Hoosiers failed to connect on a single field goal in 5:15. Down 48-40, they didn’t give up.Off of three-straight baskets from Sinclair, the Hoosiers tied it up again 48-48 with 6:07 left in the game, and IU would build as much as a four-point lead with 56 seconds to go.Sinclair said with such a quickly changing game, they knew the lead could change at any second, but she and her teammates had to continue fighting to keep the lead.“Coach called a timeout and said that it was going to be a back-and-forth, back-and-forth game, so we just had to keep it up,” Sinclair said. “(Coach said) we might be up six at one point and then we might get down three, but we’ve just got to play our hardest till the end, and it will be what it is.”But in the final minute, the Fighting Illini battled back, as Adrienne Godbold hit a contested layup along with a foul shot to move her team within one point.And they would get one more shot. Although the Hoosiers dominated all day on the boards, out-rebounding Illinois 47-32, McCully grabbed the last board off a missed jumper by Penn and laid the ball in with just 0.6 left on the clock. A Hoosier hail-mary heave failed to connect, and Indiana lost its 12th-straight conference game of the season.Sinclair led the Hoosiers with 17 points and seven rebounds, along with junior Sasha Chaplin, who scored 14 points along with seven boards.But both, along with Legette-Jack, said they wished they could have had just one more rebound.“The fight for that last rebound was the same, just like the fight for the other 47,” Legette-Jack said. “There’s no gift about it. You just have to have a knack for rebounding, and we have that knack. But sometimes you just don’t pull them down.”
____simple_html_dom__voku__html_wrapper____>In the team’s past 25 Big Ten regular season conference games, the IU women’s basketball team has managed only one win, dating back to last season.When the Hoosiers go for their first win in the conference this season Sunday, they’ll have a chance to play the only team they’ve beaten in those games: Illinois.After losing to the Fighting Illini in the teams’ first meeting at Bloomington’s Assembly Hall last season 74-67, the Hoosiers traveled to Champaign, Ill., and knocked off Illinois 59-52, ending a nine-game conference losing streak very similar to the team’s losing ways this season.Since that win Feb. 10, 2011, Indiana has gone more than a year without a conference win. With only five games left in the regular season, IU must face two teams, Ohio State and Purdue, ranked in the top 25 in the country.Even with both teams in the bottom of the Big Ten in wins this season — Illinois stands at 2-9 in the Big Ten, just one spot ahead of the last-place Hoosiers — junior forward Aulani Sinclair said she and her teammates won’t get too hyped up about this game and will treat Illinois like any other conference opponent.“It’s just another Big Ten game,” Sinclair said. “We don’t overlook anyone or underlook anyone, we’ve just got to go out there and play. It doesn’t matter if they’re (in) the number one spot or right above us — we’ve just got to play every game like we know we can.”After this season’s 11 straight conference losses, Legette-Jack said some teams might throw in the towel, but she’s convinced that her players continue to give every game their all, down to the final seconds.“We’re always talking about life lessons and staying steadfast,” Legette-Jack said. “We’re going to be competitive because that’s who we are, but we can’t always predict the score. We certainly want to win, and we’re playing and practicing hard to win, but that’s just not happening right now.“Those who quit become losers, and you won’t find that anywhere in Indiana, especially not on the IU women’s basketball team.”Down the stretch, Legette-Jack’s players have, at times, let games get out of hand. After staying close through the first half in several of their conference losses — including a one-point lead at halftime against now-No. 10 Ohio State — the Hoosiers have gone on to lose seven Big Ten games this season by at least 15 points.But Legette-Jack said that when it comes down to it, her team isn’t concerned with getting a win on Sunday but simply improving in a few key areas. And if they do so, she thinks the wins will follow.“We don’t play for the win, we play for the journey of the success and the succession,” Legette-Jack said. “We’re trying to continue to fight hard on defense and improve our offense — trying to get better on the box out, make layups and free throws and take care of the ball. If we do that, we’ll have a better chance of having success, and the score will take care of itself.”
____simple_html_dom__voku__html_wrapper____>After staying toe-to-toe with the Iowa Hawkeyes (14-10, 6-5), the Indiana women’s basketball team (5-19, 0-11) again fell short in its conference matchup, losing 83-64 Sunday afternoon in Assembly Hall.IU, a nearly 32-percent 3-point shooting team during Big Ten games thus far this season, shot only 2-for-14 with junior forward Aulani Sinclair, one of the team’s best 3-point threats, failing to connect from behind the arc.“Just because you can shoot the ball from behind the arc doesn’t mean you can always do that,” IU Coach Felisha Legette-Jack said. “If we hit those shots, we have an opportunity. They hit their shots, and it gave them some momentum, and we didn’t hit ours, and it took away some momentum from us.”After Iowa’s Melissa Dixon started the game with one of her five 3-pointers, IU started strong, going on an 8-2 run, including four points from junior guard Jasmine McGhee.Iowa then countered with a run of its own, scoring 12 of the game’s next 14 points to gain a seven-point lead. IU would pull within as close as just one point of the Hawkeyes before going into the locker room facing a four-point deficit, 35-31.The Hoosiers continued to stay close as they traded baskets with Iowa during the opening minutes of the second period. But with Iowa’s Dixon and Kamille Wahlin shooting well from behind the arc, a combined 8-for-19, the Hawkeyes were able to stretch out the Indiana defense and lengthen their lead.“Just knowing that 21 (Dixon) hit a couple threes in the first half kind of made us be cognizant of what Coach Jack had been saying in the previous days of practice about staying on the shooter,” junior center Sasha Chaplin said. “We would rather give up a two than a three, so we’d try to get out there as fast as possible and tried to defend the 3-point shot, but because of that, they were able to get inside.”Chaplin tried to battle her team back, scoring a season-high 20 points — including 12 points in the second half — but said her team continued to struggle with defending Iowa’s shooter.“At that point, we’re just trying to play basketball to the best of our ability,” Chaplin said. “Yeah, they’re up, but you have to keep playing how you know how to play basketball. But we kept not knowing where their shooters were, not knowing where 2 and 21 were while we were in transition defense, and we were helping inside too much and giving them the outside shot.”McGhee scored 14 points to go with eight rebounds, and sophomore forward Milika Taufa added eight, along with a team-high nine rebounds.Sophomore center Simone Deloach saw her first start of the season Sunday, scoring six points — her most since her first appearance of the season against Pittsburgh on Dec. 20.The Hoosiers will continue to look for their first Big Ten conference win of the season next Sunday, Feb. 12, when they play another home game against Illinois. The game will tip-off at 2 p.m. and will be broadcast on BTN.com.
____simple_html_dom__voku__html_wrapper____>Even with an 0-9 conference record, the IU women’s basketball team has had its chances.In both games against Northwestern, the Hoosiers were within as little as three points late in the second half before falling first by eight and then by seven points.Against Ohio State at Assembly Hall, one of the top teams in the Big Ten and the country, IU was up by one point going into halftime after leading in the first half by as many as eight points. The Buckeyes would go on to score the first 13 points of the second half and win by 18.On Thursday, IU Coach Felisha Legette-Jack will take her squad to University Park, Pa., to take on Penn State in hopes of both breaking the team’s conference losing streak and building some confidence by winning games down the stretch — a feat they haven’t been able to accomplish in their recent several tries.“I think that we did a really good job at taking shots available to us, but I thought we could have attacked the basket more late in the Northwestern game,” Legette-Jack said. “All things are different, but under pressure (other teams) have come on and we backed off instead of attacking. They’re going to either win the game or take it away from us, but we’ve watched some film and learned that lesson.”In four of the Hoosiers’ last five games, dating back to their first game against Northwestern on Jan. 8, Indiana has been outscored more in the second half than the first half. Legette-Jack said a lack of focus handling the ball has hurt the Hoosiers down the stretch and prevented some late-game comebacks.“We’ve gone from 21 (turnovers) to 19 to 16 to 15, and if we can get that number to our goal, which is 11, I think we have a better chance if we can protect that ball a little bit more,” Legette-Jack said. “If we can keep the ball in our possession longer, we’ll have more opportunities to have success.”Three of IU’s last four games against Penn State have come down to a single-digit deficit, but if her team is close in the last few minutes Thursday, Legette-Jack said she already knows what to tell her players to keep them focused on the task at hand.“You’ve got to trust your gut and take a deep breath and push forward and try to make something happen,” Legette-Jack said. “Every game is a different scenario — we’re going to come up with different plays for different situations — but at the end of the day, it’s just about believing in what you’ve worked on and that your work ethic is just as good as the next person. Take a deep breath and attack.”The game will tipoff at 7 p.m. Thursday in the Bryce Jordan Center and will be broadcast on BTN.com.
____simple_html_dom__voku__html_wrapper____>With 47 seconds left in Sunday’s game at Northwestern, the IU women’s basketball team was down by only three points. The team’s first conference win this season was only a couple shots away.IU Coach Felisha Legette-Jack said she had her team change its defensive strategy.“We were trying to defensively blitz them and make them go faster than they wanted to go,” Legette-Jack said. “But they have good players and kept their focus and their poise.”Northwestern forward Dannielle Diamant didn’t crack down the stretch, hitting all four of her final free-throw attempts en route to Indiana’s ninth-straight conference loss this season, 68-61. Another tough shooting day plagued the Hoosiers (5-17, 0-9), who shot 22-for-68 from the floor.It was junior forward Aulani Sinclair’s 3-pointer that got the Hoosiers on the board first after a slow start that included five missed shots in the opening two minutes.Both teams went on small runs of their own, with Northwestern (13-9, 3-6) holding as big as a 20-12 lead in the first half. IU stormed back to take a 30-29 lead with just a few minutes remaining, and the Hoosiers would go into the locker room down two, 34-32.The Wildcats scored the first nine points of the second half.IU trailed by as much as 12 in the second half, but powered by a Sinclair 3-pointer and five-straight points by junior center Sasha Chaplin, IU closed to within two, 52-50.Northwestern would then go on a 10-5 burst of its own, and the Hoosiers were never within more than three points the rest of the game.“You can’t give a team like Northwestern a lead because they aren’t going to relinquish it,” Legette-Jack said. “But we’ll continue to get better.”Legette-Jack said she saw huge improvements from Chaplin after the Hoosiers’ last game against Ohio State.“I think the kid (Chaplin) grew up today,” Legette-Jack said. “I think she came out and did some really aggressive things down the stretch.”Sinclair scored 11 points, including a 3-8 outing from behind the arc, and sophomore forward Milika Taufa was the fourth IU player in double-digit points with 10.The Hoosiers will try to keep from starting 0-10 in the Big Ten Thursday when they take on Penn State in University Park, Pa. The game will tipoff at 7 p.m. and will air on BTN.com.
____simple_html_dom__voku__html_wrapper____>Even with losses in the last eight games — all to Big Ten conference foes — the IU women’s basketball team has seen consistent scoring support from three juniors.The trio of forwards Sasha Chaplin and Aulani Sinclair and guard Jasmine McGhee have averaged almost 60 percent of the Hoosiers’ points during the last eight games.IU Coach Felisha Legette-Jack said having three players share the scoring attack depends on how regularly they can contribute.“We have got to have them consistently,” Legette-Jack said.And even with her trio scoring threat, Legette-Jack has yet to see it lead to a conference “W”, and she said it’s going to take better defense to get over the hump and secure wins in conference play this season.“You can’t give up as many points as we have been,” Legette-Jack said. “With better defense, and if we make our free throws and get some layups, the game is different, and it changes the whole dynamic. The kids are relaxed, and there’s no sense of urgency.”On Sunday, the Hoosiers travel to Evanston, Ill., in hopes of securing that win.Indiana will face Northwestern in the teams’ second battle this season. The Wildcats prevailed in the first matchup this season, a 69-61 win Jan. 8 at Assembly Hall.The game was the closest IU has come to winning a Big Ten game this season. Poor second-half shooting (8-of-33 from the field) and 20 total turnovers were the only issues that kept IU from grabbing that elusive first conference victory.Both Sinclair and McGhee shone in the first matchup, scoring 17 and 14 points, respectively, as Sinclair led the team in points and McGhee tied for the team lead in rebounds with eight.Sinclair said she, along with her teammates, will listen to their coach and fill in whatever role they can to take down the Wildcats, who are 12-9 on the season and only 2-6 in Big Ten action.“I’m just trying to do whatever we need for us as a team to win,” Sinclair said. “If that means scoring, I’ll score, and if that means rebounding, I’ll rebound. I’m just here to do whatever Coach tells me to do.”The Hoosiers and the Wildcats will tip off at 3 p.m. Sunday, and the game will air on BTN.com.
____simple_html_dom__voku__html_wrapper____>Indiana women’s basketball junior forwards Jasmine McGhee and Aulani Sinclair combined for 29 points Sunday afternoon in the Hoosiers’ contest against Michigan in Ann Arbor.However, the rest of the team scored only 19 more as IU (5-15, 0-7) fell to the Wolverines (16-4, 5-2) 66-48, marking Indiana’s seventh-straight loss this season in conference play.For the first few minutes of the game, however, IU stayed neck-and-neck with the Wolverines, taking a 7-6 lead with 17:16 left in the first half. McGhee scored the first five points for the Hoosiers.But this would be the last time IU would lead for the remainder of the game. Indiana continued to hang close as junior center Sasha Chaplin rolled in a layup with 12:36 left in the first half. IU was only down 17-13. Michigan then took off, outscoring IU 25-6 in the remainder of the first half, leaving Indiana facing a 42-19 deficit heading into the locker room at halftime.The second half saw much of the same, as Michigan scored eight of the first 11 points, jumping out to its biggest lead at 50-22.Sinclair followed with three straight 3-pointers, getting the Hoosiers back within 19 points, but IU couldn’t keep the momentum going, ending only 29.2 percent from the floor as a team for the game.But IU Coach Felisha Legette-Jack did see some improvement out of her team — even without pulling out the win — so much so that, after the game, she said she’s going to concentrate on more than the loss itself.“I loved our second half. Our second half was awesome,” Legette-Jack said. “I thought that we played with more fight like we have in practice every single day. I thought that we came out with more character, and I thought that we pushed the ball with more poise and took our open shots, and that’s what I’m going to really concentrate on.”McGhee led the Hoosiers with 15 points, and Sinclair followed close behind with 14, including shooting 4-of-13 from 3-pointer range. Junior center Sasha Chaplin pulled down 10 boards but only contributed five points, and Legette-Jack said one of the Hoosiers’ keys to improvement must be helping develop Chaplin into a greater scoring threat.“We just have to develop our kids so that we can have more weapons offensively,” Legette-Jack said. “Sasha needs to take more opportunities on her shots because she’s a 3-point shooter, but she’s such a teammate that she would rather pass the ball off. We need her to shoot more often.”Indiana will try again to grab its first Big Ten victory at 8 p.m. Thursday when the team plays No. 10/12 Ohio State at Assembly Hall. The game will air on the Big Ten Network.
____simple_html_dom__voku__html_wrapper____>Missed layups and 23 turnovers would make it hard for any team to win a basketball game. And for an IU women’s basketball team (5-13, 0-5) that traveled to Michigan State (12-5, 4-0) Thursday night searching for its first Big Ten Conference win of the season, it proved too much.Indiana fell to the Spartans 67-47 at the Breslin Center in East Lansing, Mich., in the teams’ second meeting of the 2011-12 regular season. The Hoosiers fell 63-49 in the first battle.But to IU Coach Felisha Legette-Jack, this loss was different. After spending two years at the Breslin Center as an assistant coach from 2001-2003, Legette-Jack said losing in East Lansing, even though she was sitting on the IU bench, still felt weird.“One thing I learned from Coach P (Joanne P. McCallie) when she was head coach and I was her assistant is that we don’t lose here,” Legette-Jack said. “And it still feels weird losing here even though I’m in Indiana gear.”But in the opening minutes and during most of the first half, IU stayed close. Freshman center Quaneisha McCurty, who scored only four points in Indiana’s last outing — a loss to Northwestern, started out quick, scoring four points and blocking two shots in the game’s opening minutes.Indiana’s largest lead was four points when they were up 14-10 just six minutes into the ballgame, and though they lost that lead and trailed the Spartans 33-27 at halftime after a buzzer-beating 3-pointer by Michigan State’s Porshe Poole, it still appeared to be a game IU could stay in.But as senior guard Alisha Goodwin came out and missed an open layup, IU’s first shot of the half, it seemed the tides had shifted.“We had some wide open shots where we missed four layups, and that could have really solidified our comeback,” Legette-Jack said. “But when you miss wide open layups, it really kind of zaps your energy a bit.”Michigan State lengthened its lead to as much as 12 before IU made a short six-point run, cutting the game to 48-42 with more than seven minutes to play. From then on, the team could hardly make a shot. The Spartans closed the game on a 19-5 run, and Legette-Jack said IU’s younger lineup began to show.“Winning breeds winning, and Michigan State knows how to win, and we pulled back a little bit and tried to figure out how to win,” Legette-Jack said. “Our talent is in our freshman and theirs is in their seniors, but we’ll continue to grow Indiana and help our conference get better. Our kids played hard and played a good 32 minutes tonight, and the score wasn’t indicative of the outcome, but the score is the score, and tonight the best team won.”Junior center Sasha Chaplin led the Hoosiers both in scoring and rebounds on the evening, contributing 13 points with a 5-of-7 shooting night from the floor and tearing down eight boards. McCurty finished with four blocked shots and eight points for the Hoosiers.IU will get the weekend off as the Hoosiers prepare to face in-state foe Purdue Jan. 19 at Assembly Hall. The rivalry matchup will air on the Big Ten Network and will tipoff at 8 p.m.
____simple_html_dom__voku__html_wrapper____>A pair of former IU men’s soccer defenders, Tommy Meyer and Chris Estridge, will both continue their soccer careers at the professional level after learning Thursday afternoon that they were selected in the first and second rounds, respectively, of the 2012 MLS Super Draft.Meyer was taken off the board by the defending champion Los Angles Galaxy with the 19th and final pick in the first round. A member of IU’s defensive attack for the past four years, Meyer made the All-Big Ten First Team after his senior season where he recorded seven assists, second-best in the conference.Estridge was chosen just two picks after his teammate in the second round by the Vancouver Whitecaps FC with the 21st pick of the draft. Estridge began his college soccer career with Wake Forest before transferring to Indiana for his junior and senior years. He joined Meyer on the All-Big Ten First Team and scored three goals while adding five assists in his senior campaign.Meyer and Estridge led IU to a Sweet 16 appearance in this past fall’s NCAA tournament, where they fell to the eventual national champion North Carolina Tarheels in overtime 1-0.
____simple_html_dom__voku__html_wrapper____>Fewer than two weeks ago, the IU women’s basketball team began its Big Ten conference schedule with a home game against Michigan State after its most decisive win of the season, an 80-58 victory over Texas A&M Corpus Christi at Assembly Hall.After a 63-49 loss against the Spartans on Dec. 30, the Hoosiers have continued to fail to grab a conference win, starting off 0-4 in Big Ten play. However, Thursday night, IU Coach Felisha Legette-Jack and her players will travel to East Lansing, Mich., to try to end their conference losing streak against the team that started it.The Breslin Center has been a home away from home for Legette-Jack’s team for the past several seasons. Though IU hasn’t played there since 2009, the Hoosiers have won their last three contests at Michigan State’s home arena.But Legette-Jack said she doesn’t care about streaks — winning or losing. The rest of this season is all about her young players learning lessons that will help build the program in the future.“If we could break this streak against Tri-North Middle School, I’d be happy,” Legette-Jack said. “It doesn’t really matter about Michigan State because we’re just trying to find our way and learn lessons. We’d certainly like to learn lessons through victories, but if we have to lose, I say let’s continue to learn lessons anyway.“Junior forward Aulani Sinclair, who scored only five points in IU’s first meeting with the Spartans this season, said playing Michigan State again so quickly can only help because the loss is so fresh in her teammates’ minds.“We know what mistakes we made and how we’re going to capitalize on this next game,” Sinclair said. “Our defense has to be on point, and we have to get back in transition and play Indiana defense and execute our offense.”Despite losing, Legette-Jack said she’s noticed improvement in her team compared to last season’s squad. Last year, the Hoosiers lost as many as nine games in a row, as well as 14 of their final 15, but through this rough stretch, Legette-Jack said she still sees energy in her players. “Last year when we’d lose four or five, it would be like there was a big elephant in the room taking all the air out, but this year we’ve got life,” Legette-Jack said. “This is a really good group of young folk, and we’re on our way.“No matter wins or losses, I know we aren’t going to ever quit. I know we love what we’re doing, and we’re in this thing together.”Sinclair, though, would love to grab yet another win 7 p.m. Thursday at the Breslin Center and said that finally winning a conference game would bring a much-need boost to the team’s morale.“(A win) would be huge for us,” Sinclair said. “It would give us a lot of energy and give us a new start. After you win, everybody’s spirits are a lot higher, and winning there would be such a big energy-booster for us.”
____simple_html_dom__voku__html_wrapper____>After a loss Sunday at home to conference foe Northwestern, the IU women’s basketball team now stands at 5-12, including a 0-4 start in the Big Ten. But even with only two wins thus far in Assembly Hall, the Hoosiers do seem to show an advantage when playing on Branch McCracken Court. They’ve won by almost six more points when in Bloomington, and their losses have been much closer as they lose by seven points fewer on average. Here’s a look at the IU women’s basketball team’s home court advantage so far in the 2011-12 campaign.Winning margin at home 12.5 avg. (two games) Losing margin at home 9 avg. (two games) Winning margin on the road/neutral site 6.67 avg. (three games) Losing margin on the road/neutral site 14.71 (seven games) Points averaged at home 64.14 (seven games) Points averaged on the road/neutral site 55 (10 games) Largest home win 22 points (against Texas A&M Corpus Christi on Dec. 27) Largest home defeat 14 points (against Michigan State on Dec. 30) Largest road/neutral site win 11 points (against Belmont on Nov. 18) Largest road/neutral site defeat 41 points (against Minnesota on Jan. 2)
____simple_html_dom__voku__html_wrapper____>After winning last week’s Big Ten Freshman of the Week award, IU freshman center Quaneisha McCurty saw only nine minutes of action during IU’s (5-12, 0-4) Sunday loss to Northwestern (11-5, 1-2) at Assembly Hall 69-61.McCurty scored only four points — all from the charity stripe — and she added four rebounds, one steal and two turnovers in her limited minutes Sunday afternoon.IU Coach Felisha Legette-Jack said after the game that the breakout freshman, who had averaged almost 12 points and nine rebounds per game during the Hoosiers’ last five outings, needs to get tougher if she wants to see more minutes in the future.“Her toughness has to get better, and she has to get to understand the level of intensity that it takes to play at this level,” Legette-Jack said. “There are moments that she shows it, but then there are also moments where she looks like a freshman. We just have to continue to teach her.”McCurty played six minutes in the first half and started the second half, she but left after only three minutes. Soon after, she could be seen donning her warm-up attire. She didn’t play the rest of the game.With IU’s main post presence sitting on the bench for much of the game, one of the Wildcats’ taller players down low had a breakout game to lead the team to its first conference win of the season and first win in Bloomington since a 68-66 victory Dec. 30, 1998.Junior forward Dannielle Diamant had game-highs of 20 points and nine rebounds as the Hoosiers had limited personnel to counter the Wildcat attack down low.IU was outscored in the paint 28-18 for the game, as McCurty failed to score a single field goal. Indiana still managed to narrowly out-rebound Northwestern 45-42.Junior forward Aulani Sinclair said although McCurty’s presence was missed when Diamant and other taller Northwestern players were trying to score in the paint, she and her teammates have to take up the challenge themselves.“Whoever is down there has to get it done,” Sinclair said. “We might be undersized, but we have to stick to our rules of defense, and if they’re trying to post us up, we know we’re smaller, but we have to try to get around them and stick to our defensive plan.”Legette-Jack said McGurty needs to continue to work toward being a complete player.“Today, the game came faster than it had in the past,” she said. Her thought process was a little slower than normal, and she looked a little like she was in quick sand. Her intensity wasn’t what we had seen the last few games, but she’ll get better.”McGurty will get her next chance to prover herself when the Hoosiers play at 7 p.m. Thursday at Michigan State.Legette-Jack said, with time, McCurty can develop to be one of the better players in the paint, but for now, she has to play with more intensity every game.“She has to learn with both success and failures in order to get better,” she said. “One thing we’re familiar with is how to develop post players.”
____simple_html_dom__voku__html_wrapper____>The IU women’s basketball team (5-10) suffered four losses while grabbing only two wins during winter break and has started off its Big Ten conference play 0-2.The break began with two close losses, as Indiana lost to Northern Illinois 60-59 after a 3-pointer with nine seconds left proved to be the difference. IU had just won less than a week before in a similar fashion, stealing a win away from IU-Purdue University Indianapolis 65-64 Dec. 11 with two free-throws in the waning seconds by junior Sasha Chaplin.Indiana then traveled to Cancun, Mexico, to take part in the Caribbean Classic, yet for one game more, the late-game woes followed. After a back-and-forth second half, the Hoosiers took foe Pittsburgh into overtime but lost another close game 77-72.The Hoosiers finally saw some light when they finished the Caribbean Classic with a win over Colorado State 47-39. Freshman Quaneisha McCurty scored nearly half of her team’s points while she set a career high of 20 points, along with 14 rebounds and six blocked shots.McCurty had another solid game with 17 points in Bloomington as the Hoosiers won against Texas A&M Corpus Christi 80-58 six days later, grabbing only their second win in Bloomington of the regular season thus far.IU followed up its two wins with a pair of losses to begin the Big Ten schedule, falling to Michigan State at home Dec. 30 63-49 before a 41-point defeat from Minnesota on the road, 84-43.McCurty’s play proved to be one of the few bright spots during the Hoosiers’ six games during the break, as she averaged nearly 10 points a game and grabbed Big Ten Freshman of the Week honors Monday, becoming the first IU women’s basketball player to receive the award.
____simple_html_dom__voku__html_wrapper____>For four years, senior midfielder Nick Blevins wasn’t the featured scorer for the IU men’s soccer team, nor was he the leading assist man or even a player who had many opportunities on the field.But his coaches and teammates said Blevins, whose IU soccer career has come to an end, will always be remembered as one of the hardest workers and brightest student athletes ever to set foot in Bloomington since he arrived in August 2008.Junior forward Tim Wylie, who redshirted his freshman year, roomed with Blevins while the two were freshmen just beginning their collegiate soccer careers. Wylie said that even in the first few days, he knew he had a friend he could trust.“He’s one of the nicest guys you could ever meet,” Wylie said. “I can really see him like a brother, because he’s always asking me how I’m doing and wanting to know more about me. Having a guy who can pick you up when you’re down is a great person to have on your team.”Blevins recognized his role as a mentor on the team, as well. Even though he never saw as much playing time as he would have liked as a Hoosier, Blevins said he always tried to be there for his teammates when they needed someone to confide in.“I feel like most everyone felt comfortable talking to me, and it helped when I got older because I was able to mentor the younger guys because I knew they looked up to me,” Blevins said.But the role of mentor wasn’t the only one Blevins mastered while in Bloomington, Wylie said. Blevins excelled as a student athlete away from his teammates, as well, rounding up several awards for his academic achievement.During his sophomore and junior years, Blevins was named a Big Ten Distinguished Scholar and was chosen for the Academic All-Big Ten squad.This evident attention to detail in the classroom transferred to hard work both in practice and on the field, IU Coach Todd Yeagley said.“Nick came to practice everyday with his best,” Yeagley said. “He worked really hard and was a very talented athlete who really made the team better. He always put the team first, and he made everyone around him better.”Yet even with the academic accolades off the field, Blevins said he still wishes he could have gotten more time to play. But despite not playing his freshman year and only seeing sparse time throughout the rest of his IU career, Blevins said he never gave up.“I grew a lot as a person while I was at IU,” Blevins said. “It was a bit depressing to see it all end a few weeks ago, but the last four years have been so rewarding. I got to spend time with 30 other players and coaches who loved soccer, too, and it was just a great environment to be around.”Even after his four years in Bloomington come to a close, Blevins said he hopes to continue to pursue his love for soccer. Whether through adult leagues or coaching at the youth level, Blevins said he doesn’t care.“I just don’t want to stop playing,” Blevins said.
____simple_html_dom__voku__html_wrapper____>One foot offsides. One goal taken back. One slip. One pass. One shot. One goal.In the end, it was all that separated the IU men’s soccer team in its Sweet 16 match against top seed North Carolina on Sunday at Fetzer Field in Chapel Hill, N.C. But it was all too much, as the Hoosiers dropped the game 1-0 in overtime, and the Tar Heels knocked Indiana out of the third round of the NCAA Tournament for the second time in three years.After keeping Old Dominion, the No. 2 offense in the country in goals per game, scoreless last weekend, the Hoosiers were again up against one of the top scoring threats in the country. North Carolina came into Sunday’s game having scored 52 goals, yet during the first half and part of the second, IU seemed to have the more potent offensive attack.In the game’s opening minutes, Indiana gained the first five corner kicks between the two teams and constantly attacked North Carolina goalkeeper Scott Goodwin. Yet, even with the quick opportunities the Hoosiers were able to create, IU Coach Todd Yeagley’s team failed to record a shot on goal Sunday.Yeagley said his players did everything he and his coaching staff asked of them but just couldn’t put together a goal.“Our team left everything on the field today,” Yeagley said. “They took on the No. 1 seed, and it took every ounce for that team to get a victory. I felt the whole time our team was very confident, played well and were the aggressors today in the match, and after the sting goes away, we can be proud of what we’ve done.”Perhaps no one felt the sting of the loss more than senior defender Chris Estridge, who played in his last game as a Hoosier and was the center of both of the game’s most pivotal moments, one that took a goal away from the Hoosiers and one that ended not only his season but his career at IU.Midway through the second half, the Hoosiers were pushing for the game’s first goal as sophomore midfielder Nikita Kotlov took the ball wide down the field. After the game, Estridge said he thought Kotlov would play the ball to him, but the ball was sent to freshman forward Eriq Zavaleta, who shot and had it blocked before sending it into the back of the net.The IU players and fans yelled in triumph, as they thought they had scored the go-ahead goal, but Estridge’s momentum carried him what he said was “just a foot” offsides, and the goal was waived off.The teams would trade shots through the final minutes, with junior goalkeeper Luis Soffner making a few crucial saves to push the match into overtime, where the Hoosiers were just 0-1-5 before Sunday.With fewer than four minutes left in the first overtime, the Tar Heels were threatening again, but it looked to be just another routine clear that the Hoosiers had done so many times in the previous 96 minutes.But as a Hoosier cleared the ball to the top of his own box, North Carolina’s Kirk Urso rebounded the ball, and Estridge ran to cover him.Estridge lost his footing, slipping to the ground, as Urso slotted the ball to his teammate Billy Schuler, who sent it past Soffner into the back of the net for the win.“It was a good pass to goal,” Soffner said. “He gave it a good turn, and he’s one of the best forwards out there, and he can really finish.”Soffner said he thought that, as a whole, he and his back line played as well Sunday as in their past several games, as the Hoosiers came in without a loss in their previous 10 games.“We played really good as a unit today,” Soffner said. “Our communication in our last couple games has been really good, but we knew going in that we were up against a really good, attack-minded team, and we knew we would have our hands full.”
____simple_html_dom__voku__html_wrapper____>One foot offsides. One goal taken back. One slip. One pass. One shot. One goal.In the end, it was all that separated the IU men’s soccer team in its Sweet 16 match against top-seeded North Carolina on Sunday at Fetzer Field in Chapel Hill, N.C. But it was all too much, as the Hoosiers dropped the game 1-0 in overtime, and the Tar Heels knocked Indiana out of the third round of the NCAA Tournament for the second time in three years.After keeping Old Dominion, the No. 2 offense in the country in goals per game, scoreless last weekend, the Hoosiers were again up against one of the top scoring threats in the country. North Carolina came into Sunday’s game having scored 52 goals, yet during the first half and part of the second, IU seemed to have the more potent offensive attack.In the game’s opening minutes, Indiana gained the first five corner kicks between the two teams and constantly attacked North Carolina goalkeeper Scott Goodwin. Yet, even with the quick opportunities the Hoosiers were able to create, IU Coach Todd Yeagley’s team failed to record a shot on goal Sunday.Yeagley said his players did everything he and his coaching staff asked of them but just couldn’t put together a goal.“Our team left everything on the field today,” Yeagley said. “They took on the No. 1 seed, and it took every ounce for that team to get a victory. I felt the whole time our team was very confident, played well and were the aggressors today in the match, and after the sting goes away, we can be proud of what we’ve done.”Perhaps no one felt the sting of the loss more than senior defender Chris Estridge, who played in his last game as a Hoosier and was the center of both of the game’s most pivotal moments: one that took a goal away from the Hoosiers and one that ended not only his season but his career at IU.Midway through the second half, the Hoosiers were pushing for the game’s first goal, as sophomore midfielder Nikita Kotlov took the ball wide down the field. After the game, Estridge said he thought Kotlov would play the ball to him, but the ball was sent to freshman forward Eriq Zavaleta, who shot it and had it blocked before sending it into the back of the net.The IU players and fans yelled in triumph, as they thought they had scored the go-ahead goal, but Estridge’s momentum carried him what he said was “just a foot” offsides, and the goal was waived off.The teams would both trade shots through the final minutes, with junior goalkeeper Luis Soffner making a few crucial saves to push the match into overtime, where the Hoosiers were just 0-1-5 before Sunday.With less than four minutes left in the first overtime, the Tar Heels were threatening again, but it looked to be just another routine clear that the Hoosiers had done so many times in the previous 96 minutes.But as a Hoosier cleared the ball to the top of his own box, North Carolina’s Kirk Urso rebounded the ball, and Estridge ran to cover him.Estridge lost his footing, slipping to the ground, as Urso slotted the ball to his teammate Billy Schuler, who sent it past Soffner into the back of the net for the win.“It was a good pass to goal,” Soffner said. “He gave it a good turn, and he’s one of the best forwards out there, and he can really finish.”Soffner said he thought that, as a whole, he and his back line played as well Sunday as in their past several games, as the Hoosiers came in without a loss in their previous 10 games.“We played really good as a unit today,” Soffner said. “Our communication in our last couple games has been really good, but we knew going in that we were up against a really good, attack-minded team, and we knew we would have our hands full.”