Special to The Bloomingtonian, by Skip DaleySouth Central Indiana News Network
“Well, it’s a win,” exhaled Head Coach Teri Moren to start off the post-game press conference. Even though the Indiana University Women’s Basketball Team defeated the Western Michigan Broncos 67-57, Coach Moren was disappointed at the lackluster manner in which they won.
“I thought we got off to a slow start,” Coach said, describing the Hoosiers’ play as “sluggish” for 35 minutes of the game. “Glad we won the game, not as pleased as I want to be with us defensively this afternoon.”
The game started off on a nearly twenty-minute delay due to a technical difficulty with the shot clocks, but IU also seemed to be on a delay of sorts. In a match-up that easily could have been a 20-plus point differential, Indiana allowed Western Michigan to confuse them on several occasions with their offensive set, including Taylor Williams, the 6’2” Broncos’ Center setting the offense from the top of the key.
“She’s extremely athletic and was good at getting down in the paint, working herself in,” said IU Forward Mackenzie Holmes of Williams. “I know we could have done a better job at guarding her, but she is long, has a good handle, and just played well tonight.”
Holmes had some amazing numbers, putting up 17 points and pulling down 19 rebounds, but it was Kiandra Browne who stole much of the show for the Hoosiers. Coming off of the bench, she sparked IU by muscling in the paint to haul 4 rebounds and score 6 points in her first 4 minutes. She would wind up just a missed free-throw away from a double-double, concluding with 9 points and 10 rebounds in her 14 minutes of play.
Coach Moren called “[KB] the energy player of the game,” which was refreshing, after she recently called her out for inconsistency in her play, including over-fouling. Moren went on to say that Browne provided tremendous minutes and energy tonight, calling her the bright spot of today’s game. “She’s been a little disappointed with her [recent] play,” Moren said of Browne. “She keeps coming in and doing the work. She’s more conscientious about what we need her to do, what her role is for us, and I think she’s paying better attention, especially defensively.”
There were other moments of solid play from Indiana, including a 13-0 run to start off the second half. The offense was successful in driving the ball into the paint, where they shine. Sadly, they were not able to press the accelerator and put the game out of reach, stemming from that 3rd quarter gust.
Indiana walks away from this game improving their overall record to 9-2 (2-0 Big Ten) and will likely hold their 10th national ranking. The Broncos fall to 6-3.
Next up, the Hoosiers play 2 final non-conference games, both at home. IU takes on Wright State at 7pm on Tuesday, December 21st, and will host Southern Illinois at 1pm on Thursday, December 23rd. On New Year’s Eve, the Hoosiers take their game on the road to battle the Scarlet Knights of Rutgers.