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Three Things: Indiana Women’s Basketball defeats Charlotte 85-51

Hoosiers cruise in Round 1 Win

Syndication: The Herald-Times
IU bench celebrates Saturday afternoon
Rich Janzaruk/Herald-Times / USA TODAY NETWORK

3-seed Indiana got the win over 14-seed Charlotte during Assembly Hall’s first-ever NCAA Women’s tournament game. Here’s Three Things:

Balance

IU’s offensive attack was as multidimensional as we’ve ever seen it this afternoon. There were plenty of points to go around, and four Hoosiers finished with double figures. First, Aleksa Gulbe got it going from deep, hitting two triples. Then, Mackenzie Holmes started cooking in the paint, scoring 19 points on 9-15 shooting and adding 8 rebounds. When the 49ers started doubling early, Grace Berger transitioned from passer to shooter. The Honorable Mention All-American finished with 18, 6, and 6, she is the definition of balance. In all, the Hoosiers finished with 23 assists, one shy of tying their season-high.

We also saw some real minutes from a few players who have been deeper down on the bench this season. The second unit went a perfect 4-4 from the field, and Mona Zaric’s first points of the year were met with raucous applause from her teammates. Happy times in the Hall!

Shooting

Life is just better when your basketball team is hitting its’ shots, and IU fans are Chillin’ with a capital C after yesterday’s victory. The Hoosiers were 35-64 (54.7%) from the field, a nice improvement on their season average of 45%. Getting hot at the right time is a must, and the Cream and Crimson are firing on all cylinders.

Adding 22 points off turnovers and 18 on the break tells you all you need to know about this one. IU was just better.

Also need to give a CQ nod to 49er Guard Octavia Jett-Wilson. The C-USA Player of the Year led the charge for Charlotte, finishing with 19 points. She also played well defensively, keeping Ali Patberg in check for most of the afternoon. One underrated aspect of the NCAA Tournament is the exposure it gives players and schools we don’t typically hear much about. Glad we got to watch #13, she can ball.

Round of 32

Up next for IU are the 11-seed Princeton Tigers, who “upset” the 6-seed Kentucky Wildcats 69-62 yesterday. The Ancient Eight champions are much better than their 11-seed moniker, and deserve IU’s respect on the court. This is gonna be a good one. A Sweet Sixteen bid will be on the line when the two teams face off on Monday. Tip is set for 8pm.