Feb. 16, 2009
MADISON, Wis. – Senior Amber Jackson recorded her 10th double-double as a Hoosier (16-8, 9-6) with 15 points and 14 rebounds to lead the Hoosiers to a crucial win over the Wisconsin Badgers. A Kim Roberson three forced overtime, and the Hoosiers never looked back on their way to a 67-61 victory.
Jackson scored ten of her 15 points and hauled in 9 of her 14 rebounds in the second half and overtime. Junior Jamie Braun led all scorers with 20 points, scoring 15 after the intermission. Braun put up four points a rebound and an assist in the overtime alone.
“Today our team decided to be great,” said Indiana head coach Felisha Legette-Jack. “We decided that we were just going to stay focused and play for 40 minutes, and whatever comes out of those 40 minutes, we will live with. We just continued to play throughout the entire game. We just kept playing and kept empowering each other and we came out of this game with a team and I’m very proud of these Hoosiers.”
With the Hoosiers up 8-5 at the 14:48 mark, Wisconsin’s Teah Gant sank a 3-pointer that ignited a 16-2 Badger run to give the home team a 21-10 lead with 7:01 on the clock. However, Indiana answered and closed out the half outscoring Wisconsin, 8-0, to head into the break down by three, 21-18.
Wisconsin scored first in the second stanza on a layup by Tara Steinbauer at the 18:56 mark, but a three-point play from Jackson started a 19-11 Hoosier run that gave IU a three-point lead, 37-34, with 10:39 left in the game. The Badgers came back by way of a jumper from Anya Covington and a pair of free throws from Steinbauer to take a 38-37 lead. However, Thomas converted a three-point play to regain the advantage for Indiana, 40-38, with 8:19 to play. Braun sank a pair of free throws to increase IU’s lead to four, 42-38, with 7:44 on the clock, but the Badgers fought back with back-to-back layups from Steinbauer and Lin Zastrow to knot the score at 42-42 with 6:46 to go. Another basket from Steinbauer with 5:27 on the clock gave Wisconsin a two-point lead, 44-42. Following a pair of free throws from Zastrow, Braun sank a jumper with 4:18 remaining to bring the Hoosiers back within two, 46-44. However, Wisconsin answered once again, this time on a jumper from Zastrow with 3:14 to play. Just 13 seconds later, Braun sank two free throws and followed with a jumper on IU’s next possession to tie the score at 48-48. Another layup from Steinbauer with 1:13 on the clock broke the tie in UW’s favor, and the Badgers added to their lead with a pair of free throws from Zastrow with 50.5 remaining in the game. IU also had an answer as Jackson sank two free throws with 39.7 seconds on the clock and Roberson hit a clutch 3-pointer with just 1.3 seconds left in regulation to send the game into overtime tied at 53-53.
Wisconsin opened the OT with a free throws from Steinbauer to take a 55-53 lead with 4:12 on the clock, but Whitney Thomas put in two free throws of her own to tie the score for the 10th time in the game. However, Indiana built up a 6-point lead en route to a 67-61 win.
“The only word that comes to my mind when I think of Wisconsin is stingy,” said Legette-Jack. “Their defense is so stingy and so hard to get anything off, to have any kind of system at all. They have the best defense possibly in the conference. Lisa (Stone) is doing a tremendous job with her team and my hats off to their program. They are going to be a force to reckon with in the Big Ten Tournament, no doubt about that.”
The Hoosiers shot 21-52 from the field and 7-18 from behind the arc. The real advantage was at the free throw line, where IU went 18-24 compared to the Badgers’ 10-16.
Indiana will travel to Evanston, Ill., on Thursday, Feb. 19 to face Northwestern in its final road game of the regular season. Tip-off against the Wildcats is set for 8 p.m. ET.