McKay Leads IU Over Ball State (12-31-03)
Dec. 31, 2003
“This was our first game back from break and you could definitely tell,” said Indiana head coach Kathi Bennett. “We were able to fight them off when they got close which was encouraging.”
Freshman center Sarah McKay had a breakout game for the Cream and Crimson posting career and season highs in points (24) and rebounds (16) for her first ever double-double. In addition, sophomore guard Cyndi Valentin posted 14 points while junior Jenny DeMuth scored 11. Six of the Hoosiers’ seven wins have come when the team has three scorers in double figures.
“Sarah is a freshman playing a ton of minutes and she keeps getting better and better,” said Bennett. “She’s an exciting player to watch.”
Thanks to four points and seven rebounds from McKay in the first five minutes of the game, the Hoosiers had a comfortable six-point lead to start the first half. The Cardinals brought it back to within one, 23-22, with 3:11 left to play on three pointers by Dana Collins and Johna Goff. Indiana was able to hold on to the lead and went into halftime with a 31-24 advantage after an 8-2 run including a buzzer beater by McKay to end the half.
Free throw shooting was the name of the game in the second stanza with Indiana shooting 17-19 and Ball State shooting 12-18 from the line. Ball State depleted a 13- point lead held by Indiana in the opening minutes of the half, eventually taking over the lead for the first time in the game at the 9:06 mark on a layup by Kate Endress. The Hoosiers regained the lead for the final time 52-49 at the7:28 mark on a layup by McKay. Perfect shooting at the line from then on out secured the win for Indiana.
McKay’s 24 points is the sixth most ever scored by an Indiana freshman while her 16 rebounds is the fifth most by a freshman at Indiana.
The Cardinals were lead by Endress with 28 points and five rebounds and Goff with 16 points and four rebounds.
The Cream and Crimson open Big Ten Conference play on January 2 at Michigan State. Game time is set for 7 p.m. Read below for additional game notes on the match-up.
• Michigan State is one of the up-and-coming teams in the Big Ten. The Spartans are off to a 9-1 start that includes a 92-63 win over Notre Dame. Michigan State’s lone defeat was a 62-60 loss at the hands of Oklahoma State in Stillwater. Since that contest, MSU has rattled off five consecutive victories.
• The Spartans have won with tight defense this year, limiting the opposition to a scant 53.3 points per game average on 35.7 shooting from the field. Rebounding has also played a large role in Michigan State’s success, as the Spartans grab about nine more boards per contest than the opposition.
• MSU comes off a 55-43 win over Cincinnati at the Breslin Center in which it limited the Bearcats to 15-of-48 shooting from the field (31 percent).
• The Spartan offense is predicated on balance, as Lindsay Bowen (12.7 ppg), Liz Shimek (10.9 ppg) and Kristin Haynie (10.3 ppg) all average double-figure scoring totals. Bowen and Shimek shared Big Ten Freshman of the Year honors in 2002-03.
Fourth-year head coach Kathi Bennett leads the Hoosiers into action. Bennett has compiled a 57-44 record during her tenure in Bloomington and a 281-147 career mark in her 16 seasons as a head coach. Bennett is coming off a summer in which she served as an assistant coach for Team USA at the Pan American Games, helping the team to a silver medal.
Joanne P. McCallie has steadily built Michigan State into a winner, guiding the Spartans to a 55-44 record during her four years in East Lansing.
Michigan State is Indiana’s first ranked opponent of 2003-04. The last time Indiana beat a ranked opponent was January 12, 2003, when IU downed No. 23 Ohio State, 54-50.
WHAT IT MEANS
An Indiana win would:
* Be the fifth win for Indiana over Michigan State in the last seven meetings between the two teams, with all five wins coming under Kathi Bennett.
* Be the first win for Indiana over a ranked opponent since January 12, 2003, when IU downed No. 23 Ohio State, 54-50.
* Be the third consecutive win for Indiana, matching the longest winning streak of the season (the Hoosiers beat Virginia Commonwealth, Georgetown and Maine consecutively earlier this season.)
* Improve Kathi Bennett to 3-1 in Big Ten openers.
* Improve Indiana to 4-1 in road games this year.
* Improve the Hoosiers to 10-12 all-time in Big Ten openers.
* Snap a two-game losing streak to Michigan State.
* Snap a four-game losing streak for Indiana against the two Big Ten schools in Michigan, with the last win a 67-55 victory over Michigan State on February 3, 2002.
* Improve the Hoosiers to 8-4 on the year, a mark identical to last year’s 8-4 start through the first 12 games despite the fact that this year’s club is far younger than last year’s senior-laden squad. This year’s 12-player roster is dotted by five freshmen, five sophomores, two juniors and no seniors.
An Indiana loss would:
* Be the third consecutive loss to Michigan State.
* Extend the Hoosiers’ losing streak against Big Ten teams from the state of Michigan to five games, with the last win a 67-55 victory over Michigan State on February 3, 2002.
* Be the fourth consecutive Indiana loss to a team ranked in the top 25, with the last win a 57-50 win over No. 23 Ohio State last year.
* Move Indiana to 9-13 all-time in Big Ten openers.