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Hoosiers compile one helluva box score in season-opening win

IU rolled over Eastern Kentucky, setting records in the process

COLLEGE BASKETBALL: MAR 06 Big Ten Women’s Tournament - Rutgers vs Indiana Photo by Jeffrey Brown/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

We thought we knew a couple things coming into this Indiana women’s basketball season:

1. These Hoosiers are really, really good.

2. They’d have no trouble at all with their season-opening opponent.

Both beliefs turned out to be very true. IU not only bounced Eastern Kentucky, 100-51, in its first game of the season, the Hoosiers had a fun time in doing so. Here’s the evidence:

  • Grace Berger posted the first triple-double in IU women’s history with 17 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists. Berger, who finished plus-47 on the afternoon, shot 6-of-10 from the field and 2-of-4 from the perimeter, accomplishing the feat in a team-high 26 minutes. Her triple-double is the first for a Big Ten women’s player since Illinois’ Alex Wittinger similarly stuffed the stat sheet on Jan. 23, 2018.
  • And how about the efficiency of Mackenzie Holmes? The sophomore forward scored 26 points on a perfect shooting day from the field. Holmes made all 13 of her field goal attempts, becoming the first player in IU history to make every shot (minimum 10 attempts). Holmes’ 13-for-13 also matches former Iowa star Megan Gustafson’s Big Ten-best performance from Nov. 13, 2018.
  • Ali Patberg was not to be outdone. Patberg scored 18 points, marking her 16th straight double-figure output. Most notably, Patberg’s performance made her the 28th Hoosier in IU women’s history to join the 1,000-point club. Together, the trio of Berger, Holmes and Patberg combined for 61 points and shot 26-for-35 from the field.

“There were some obvious bright spots today,” IU coach Teri Moren said. “... Grace Berger was terrific with her triple-double and Mack being perfect from the field. I didn’t realize that it was a school record and she made history. It is really cool for Mack. It is so well deserved. The way she has gotten her body right as a sophomore, and the fact that I overheard her talking about her conditioning and how important it was for her to stay out on the floor longer. I thought Ali Patberg was solid. Those starters have played a lot of minutes. I thought there were some good things.

Twelve Hoosiers saw the floor, including Notre Dame transfer Danielle Patterson. The redshirt junior forward continues to work her way back from a knee injury — Moren said Tuesday that Patterson is still trying to establish her previous mobility. But Patterson gave IU some good minutes in her Hoosier debut on Wednesday, scoring 14 points and grabbing four rebounds in 20 minutes.

Overall, there was a lot to like.

And a lot to look forward to with Moren’s group this winter.

“It was a good opening day for us,” Moren said.