If Indiana’s win over Tennessee on Thursday was the Yarden Garzon game, Saturday’s matchup with Princeton was the Sara Scalia game.
The fifth-year senior dominated this contest from the very beginning, and finished with 28 points, the most she’s scored in an IU uniform. Her Hoosiers had to battle in the second half against a tough Tigers squad, but IU hung on for a 72-63 win in the Elevance Health Fort Myers Tip-Off in Fort Myers, Fla.
Scalia got into a rhythm quickly, shooting 3 for 3 on threes in the first quarter. She racked up 18 points in the first half, with a 4-for-6 mark from 3-point range. The guard shot 10 for 17 from the field and 5 for 9 from beyond the arc in the full game. She added seven rebounds — also her most as a Hoosier — along with five assists and two steals.
Indiana (5-1) led at halftime, 41-24. The Hoosiers started off strong in the first quarter, before the offense cooled off in the latter half of the quarter. But IU exploded in the second quarter for 25 points, while shooting a whopping 83 percent from the field as a team.
Mackenzie Holmes scored 15 points in the second period, and her layup with 7:32 to go in the third quarter put her over 2,000 career points. She’s the second player in program history to achieve the milestone, joining Tyra Buss. Holmes finished with a 9 for 17 clip from the field for 20 points, with a team-high eight rebounds, four assists, and two blocks.
But Princeton didn’t go away easily, cutting the IU lead to 56-45 at the end of the third quarter after rolling out some different defensive looks. The Tigers got their deficit as low as six points in the fourth quarter, but Indiana responded. Scalia hit a clutch 3-pointer to break the Princeton run when IU’s lead was down to 58-52, and the Hoosiers came up with some defensive stops when they needed them most. Garzon and Chloe Moore-McNeil also made some clutch shots in the fourth quarter to help put the game away.
Indiana returns to action on Thursday with a road contest at Maine, a homecoming game for Holmes, a Gorham, Maine native.