By JOHN BAUERNFEIND | IDS
POSTED AT 12:37 AM ON NOV. 12, 2013 (UPDATED AT 12:02 AM ON NOV. 13, 2013)
After his team’s season-opening victory against Oakland on Saturday night, IU Coach Curt Miller said he was excited to see the Hoosiers get out offensively and push the ball.
Last season, the IU women’s basketball team averaged 55.2 points per game.
On Saturday, the team scored 85.
“What a fun difference for me,” Miller said in a postgame press conference. “After spending the whole year trying to slow the ball down and shorten games, to allow this team to get out and run, I think it’s the best first half scoring we’ve had under my tenure.”
Indeed, it was the most first half points the Hoosiers (1-0) had scored under Miller, who travel to Fort Wayne on Tuesday to play IPFW (0-1).
Last season, Indiana defeated IPFW at home 64-47.
The Mastodons finished the 2012-13 season with a 13-17 record, going 8-8 in conference play.
In its regular season opener, IPFW lost to Wichita State, 46-69.
Senior Amanda Hyde led the Mastadons with 13 points, while junior Haley Seibert and freshman Rachel Rinehart contributed 10 points each.
Senior Stefanie Mauk added eight rebounds to lead the team in that
Despite the Hoosiers’ lopsided victory Saturday, the team relented 26 free throws to Oakland while shooting just 14 themselves.
Miller said his team will have to learn how to defend without fouling so often.
“We’re going to have to defend better, as we all are seeing the game’s going to be called differently,” he said. “We’ve got to keep opponents off the foul line better than we did tonight.”
In their debuts for IU, senior forward Tabitha Gerardot and freshman guard Larryn Brooks scored 14 and 19 points, respectively.
Nine players saw at least 10 minutes of playing time in Saturday’s victory, and Gerardot said players contributed in any way possible.
“Everyone just pitches in and plays their role, that’s the beauty of it,” Gerardot said after the game. “I was just responding emotionally to what everyone was doing.”
Brooks, who added seven rebounds and four assists, said right now she’s trying to succeed in her role with the team.
“Main goals right now is just playing my role and just doing what I can for the team,” she said. “It’s all about the team.”
Miller said his team’s depth was evident in how many players saw action Saturday.
“Our depth showed,” he said. “There’s very little difference between one and 12. Our lineup can continue to change and get contributions from different people.”
The Hoosiers went 2-10 away from Assembly Hall last season. Miller said with a young team like his there will be a combination of highs and lows to expect.
“It’s an exciting young team, and tonight was a high,” Miller said. “There’s going to be peaks and valleys this year.”
More pressing, Miller said, is that the Hoosiers begin to discover how to earn victories away from home.
“It’s important that this program starts to learn how to win on the road,” Miller said.