Sinclair Lifts Hoosiers to Win Over FIU
Dec. 18, 2010
MIAMI, Fla. - Indiana (6-5) survived a tight one on the road at Florida International (5-6) behind a career-high 21 points from Aulani Sinclair in a 64-60 victory. Sinclair nailed a career-best seven 3-point field goals in the win. Junior Georgie Jones made her Hoosier debut after sitting out a transfer year and scored a career-high 16 points while grabbing six rebounds. Senior All-America candidate Jori Davis rounded out the double-figure scoring for IU with 12 points.
Jones made her presence known from the start winning the opening tip, then grabbing an offensive board on the first possession to lay it in. After an FIU 3-point field goal from Michelle Gonzalez, the Hoosiers scored 10-consecutive points capped by a Davis 3-point field goal to make it a 12-3 advantage with 16:15 remaining in the first half.
Gonzalez nailed another 3-pointer to silence the IU run momentarily. Indiana struck again with Jones putting in another layup, then Sinclair hit from long range and Jones connected on a 15-footer to extend the advantage to 19-6 with 12:28 left in the opening stanza.
FIU wasn't going away as the Panthers clawed their way back into the game with a 13-4 run of their own to cut the lead to 23-19 with 6:33 left on the clock. The Hoosiers would outscore FIU 12-7 in the final moments of the half to take a 34-25 lead into the locker room.
The Panthers came out of the locker room strong with a 12-4 run to cut the deficit to 39-37 with 15:02 remaining. Sinclair silenced that initial push with another 3-point bomb to make the score 42-37 at the 14:48 mark. FIU kept the momentum going and eventually took its first lead since the 18:29 mark of the first half on a Jerica Coley layup to cap off a 7-0 run to make the score 50-48 in favor of the Panthers with 8:25 to play.
The Panthers continued to play even with Indiana and led 56-55 over IU with just under five minutes remaining. Sinclair nailed her seventh 3-point field goal with 4:06 left in the game to regain the edge for Indiana at 58-56. The Hoosiers extended the lead to four on a Jones layup at the 3:37 mark. FIU still hung tough with Rodgers connecting on a pair of free throws and a layup to knot the score at 60 with 2:18 to play.
With the score tied, Whitney Lindsay lobbed the ball on an out-of-bounds play to Sasha Chaplin in the paint where Chaplin nailed a bucket to give IU the lead for good at 62-60 with 1:24 to play. FIU ran the other way quickly but Rodgers missed a layup for the Panthers and Davis grabbed the rebound. Davis connected on her free throws to seal the game.
"Georgie (Jones) played with that `I've been here before' mindset," head coach Felisha Legette-Jack said. "She's won state championships before...it's really good to see her back out there. Sasha Chaplin did a tremendous job of coming out, (athletic trainer Robert Black) did a great job of monitoring her minutes...if we work together as a staff and as a team, we can do something significant. It's not always going to be roses, but when we work together, good things tend to happen."
Chaplin saw her first action of the 2010-11 season after missing 10 games with a toe injury. Sinclair's seven 3's were good to tie for the third best single-game mark in IU women's basketball history.
The Hoosiers continue their trip through the Sunshine State with a matchup against Florida Gulf Coast on Dec. 21 at 7:30 p.m.
- Georgie Jones made her Indiana debut against FIU. Jones netted a career-high 16 points and grabbed six rebounds in 30 minutes of play. The junior shot 8-for-11 from the field in the win.
-Sasha Chaplin made her 2010-11 season debut after sitting out 10 games with an injury. Chaplin had five points and eight rebounds in 17 minutes of play, including the go ahead bucket with 1:24 to play.
- Sophomore Aulani Sinclair put on a show setting career-highs with 21 points and seven 3-point field goals. Her seven 3's are good to tie for the third-best single game mark in IU women's basketball history.
- Whitney Lindsay finished with eight assists tonight. That marks the third time this season Lindsay has dished for eight or more assists in a game. (8 vs. Memphis on Nov. 18, 9 vs. Nebraska on Dec. 5)
- The Hoosiers shot 45.3 percent (24-for-53) as a team for the game and 47.8 percent from 3-point range (11-for-23) which are both season-high marks this year.
- Indiana's 11 3-point field goals made ties for the second highest total in IU history. The Hoosier hit 12 3's against East Tennessee State in 1998 and again against Purdue in 1999.
- Senior All-America candidate Jori Davis scored 12 points tonight. She has scored in double-figures in 10 games this season. She also grabbed four rebounds, had six assists and two steals.
- Indiana outrebounded FIU by a 43-31 margin. The Hoosiers have outrebounded their opponents five times this season, winning four of those games.
Check back soon