No. 5 seed Indiana knocked off No. 13 seed Rutgers 66-54 in a Thursday Big Ten Tournament matchup at Gainbridge Fieldhouse in Indianapolis.
The Hoosiers were led by Ali Patberg with 19 points on 5-of-7 shooting from beyond the 3-point arc. Grace Berger added 17 for the Hoosiers. Patberg and Berger both and six assists and one turnover, and Berger led IU with six rebounds. IU held Rutgers to 36.5 percent shooting from the field.
“I thought AP (Patberg) was great,” IU coach Teri Moren said after the game. “We were over on the sideline even, trying to encourage her to take more shots. We felt like she was passing up a few.
“She’s had a lot of success in this building and we’re only as good as our super senior and our super senior was really good today. So I’m excited for her tomorrow and hopefully we can stay here for a couple days.”
Patberg is 8-of-11 from three over her last two games and has worked her season percentage up to 34.4.
The Scarlet Knights stayed within striking distance for much of the game, but a late shot clock 3-pointer by Nicole Cardano-Hillary put the Hoosiers up 57-41 with 5:52 remaining. Cardano-Hillary had five steals in the game including three in the fourth quarter.
“I thought Nicki was terrific on the ball,” Moren said.
Indiana (20-7) will face No. 4 seed Maryland in the quarterfinals on Friday at approximately 1:50 p.m. Eastern on BTN. The Hoosiers and Terrapins split their two meetings earlier in the season, with both teams winning on their home courts in close games.
“We know that we can beat them,” Moren said of Maryland. “We beat them in Bloomington, did some things that if we had do-overs we would have done differently in College Park. But I think that we feel like we have a great opportunity ahead of us tomorrow.”
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