Indiana Wins Big Ten Home Opener over Northwestern, 68-64
Jan. 6, 2013
BLOOMINGTON, Ind. - Aulani Sinclair poured in 31 points and Simone Deloach skied for a career-high 15 rebounds to lead Indiana past Northwestern on Sunday afternoon, 68-64. The win gave IU its first Big Ten victory of the season. Jasmine McGhee added 14 points in the effort for the Hoosiers.
Linda Rubene ignited the Indiana (10-5, 1-1) offense in the early going. She nailed a jumper to give her seven of IU's first 11 points as Indiana led, 11-8. The field goal began a 7-0 run for Indiana as Jasmine McGhee followed with a 3-pointer before Sinclair hit on a layup make it a 16-8 Hoosier lead.
The Wildcats (8-7, 0-2) then clawed their way into the IU lead to pull within two, 23-21, at the 7:42 mark. The Hoosiers responded with four-straight points by Sinclair and a jumper from the top of the key by Deloach.
Sinclair then found an open Rubene cutting to the rim for a lay in to put Indiana up by 10. After an NU free throw, Nicole Bell drove into the lane and connected on a floater with 2:39 to play to finish IU's 10-1 scoring run and give the Hoosiers their biggest lead of the half, 33-22.
Northwestern managed to cut the deficit to single digits before the half as IU led 35-27 at the break.
With 17:28 remaining, McGhee buried a 3-pointer to push Indiana ahead by nine, 41-32. The Wildcats awoke shortly there after, stringing together a 13-2 run capped by a Lauren Douglas 3-point field goal at the 13:34 mark to give NU its first lead since the first minute of the game, 44-43.
IU fired right back with a Deloach layup to regain the lead. The teams then traded free throws to keep the margin at one point in Indiana's favor, 47-46.
Beginning with a Sinclair 3-point bomb at the 8:30 mark, Indiana outscored Northwestern 13-5 over the next 5:05 to build a nine-point advantage, 60-51, with 3:25 on the clock.
The Wildcats then started to scrap their way back into the game. A pair of Kendall Hackney free throws followed by another Douglas 3-pointer put NU within five points before Hackney scored again at the 2:22 mark to make it narrow 60-57 margin.
Just seconds later, Indiana's Sinclair found McGhee for a layup to make the lead five points for the home team. Douglas answered for Northwestern with yet another make from beyond the arc to put her team within two, 62-60, with just over 90 seconds remaining in the game.
Sinclair hit a pair from the charity stripe on IU's next possession before NU answered again with a field goal to make the score 64-62 in favor of the Hoosiers. Just like Sinclair, McGhee nailed two clutch free throws with the clock stopped at 1:09 to stretch the lead to four points.
There was no quit from Northwestern as Karly Roser found an open Dannielle Diamant for layup with under a minute to play to narrow the margin to two yet again. NU's full court pressure caused a Hoosier turnover to give the Wildcats the basketball with 41 seconds to go.
On the ensuing possession, Indiana forced an errant Northwestern pass to sail out-of-bounds before a pair of free throws from Sinclair iced the game for the Hoosiers.
"It was a really gutty win," head coach Curt Miller said. "That's a big win for us in our home opener. Our defense was tremendous, they stuck to the game plan and we made some people feel open that we wanted to feel open. We tried our (hardest) to keep them off the foul line and limit their threes. But the bottom line is we rebounded tonight. That was the big story of the game. We needed to rebound with this team in order to have success. Not only did we get on the offensive glass, we kept their offensive rebound total very low."
The Hoosiers shot 18-for-20 (90 percent) from the free throw line in the game and outrebounded Northwestern, 42-31.
Sinclair shot 7-for-13 from the field, including three 3-point field goals. She connected on 14-of-15 free throws as she has now tallied 30 or more points in three of the last five games.
"I thought Aulani took her opportunities when she got them," Miller said. "Even though they played some triangle and two and tried to play some jump defense on her. She still did a good job finding scores and let the offense come to her and made free throws when she had to."
To go along with her career-best 15 boards, Simone Deloach finished with eight points on 3-for-5 shooting and added a career-high four assists. Andrew Newbauer led IU with a season-best eight assists to go along with two steals and two blocks, a new career mark. Rubene finished with nine points in the game, shooting 4-for-8 from the field with a 3-pointer and had five boards.
The Hoosiers will welcome Nebraska to Assembly Hall on Thursday, Jan. 10. That game will tip at 6:30 p.m. ET live on BTN.
The win gave head coach Curt Miller his first Big Ten victory at the helm of the Hoosier program.
IU outrebounded Northwestern, 42-31, marking the eighth time this season that Indiana has outrebounded its opponent as the Hoosiers are 7-1 in those contests.
Indiana pulled down 15 offensive rebounds, marking the fourth time this year that IU has had 15 or more offensive boards in a game. The Hoosiers outscored Northwestern in second chance points, 14-6.
As a team, Indiana shot 18-for-20 (90 percent) from the charity stripe which is the most free throws made in a single game this season by IU. Indiana has shot 90 percent or better in two contests this year.
IU had 17 team assists with 22 made field goals. The Hoosiers have had 17 or more assists in three games this year.
Aulani Sinclair finished with 31 points on 7-for-13 shooting, including three 3-pointers. She has scored 30 or more points in three of the last five games and has now tallied 977 career points. She is just 23 points shy of becoming the 23rd player in program history to eclipse 1,000 career points. Sinclair has scored in double-figures 12 times this season and 44 times in her career.
Sinclair also connected on 14-of-15 free throws, her new career high for free throws made in a single game. It is only the eighth time in program history that a player has hit 14 or more free throws in a single game.
Jasmine McGhee finished with 14 points, marking her fourth-consecutive game in double-figures. She shot 2-for-4 from beyond the arc and had four rebounds. McGhee has eclipsed 10 points in nine games this year and 23 career games.
Simone Deloach led IU with a career-best 15 rebounds, which is the most boards by any IU player this season in a single game. Deloach also had eight points with a career-high four assists and a block while shooting 3-for-5 from the field. She has had double-digit rebounds in two career games.
Andrea Newbauer dished for a season-high eight assists with two steals, two rebounds and a career-best two blocked shots.
Linda Rubene tallied nine points, shooting 4-for-8 from the field. She also added five rebounds and three assists.
Check back soon