The Indiana women just keep setting new standards.
Before 5,159 fans at Simon Skjodt Assembly Hall, Indiana put together a dominant wire-to-wire effort against in-state rival Purdue on Thursday night.
With redshirt junior guard Ali Patberg leading the way with 18 points, the Hoosiers defeated the Boilermakers 66-48 to move to 4-0 in the Big Ten for the first time in program history. Indiana’s No. 12 national ranking is also a program all-time best.
IU’s defense led the way, as the Hoosiers held Purdue to 38 percent shooting from the field. Indiana forced 21 turnovers on the night and had 11 steals. Patberg had three steals while sophomore forward Alexa Gulbe added four blocks.
“Our defense was pretty good,” Patberg said. “That’s what we hang our hat on.”
Head coach Teri Moren was also impressed with the defensive effort.
“I thought defensively tonight we were terrific,” Moren said. “We didn’t give Purdue anything easy. Our identity is on the defensive end. For at least 35 minutes of that game we were really good defensively. Give our kids credit for sticking to the game plan.”
Patberg had six points in the first quarter as the Hoosiers ran out to a 14-6 lead behind a stifling defense that saw Purdue shoot 3-of-15 from the field. IU expanded on their lead in the second quarter and took a 28-16 margin into halftime.
The Hoosiers (14-2, 4-0) never looked back as Purdue was unable to mount a threat in the second half. Indiana was up by 22 just a few minutes into the third quarter and cruised from there.
Gulbe joined Patberg in double figures with 10 points while Brenna Wise added nine. Gulbe and Wise led IU with 8 and 6 rebounds, respectively. Grace Berger had 5 assists to lead the Hoosiers.
Indiana has now won five of their last six against Purdue as the rivalry once dominated by the Boilermakers seems to be shifting in favor of IU and their Purdue alum head coach Moren.
The Hoosiers stand alone atop the Big Ten with their perfect mark in the league. IU will hit the road to face Iowa (12-3, 3-1) with first place on the line on Sunday at 5 p.m. ET. The Hawkeyes have won 29 straight on their home floor. That game will air live on BTN.
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