Quinnipiac Women’s Basketball Threatens No. 4 Indiana, Falls Short in Fourth


(Photo: Quinnipiac Athletics)

Lo Yarnall

The Quinnipiac women’s basketball team led for the first three quarters before the No. 4 Indiana Hoosiers took back control.

After a hot streak started by free throws, the Hoosiers went on a 29-6 run to complete the comeback in the fourth to beat the Bobcats 67-59 on Saturday.

“I think that this was the perfect opportunity to show that we’re back to the championship-level team that [head coach Tricia Fabbri] coached a couple years ago,” Quinnipiac junior forward Mikala Morris said. “We did that tonight.”

The Bobcats welcomed the Hoosiers into the People’s United Center for their home opener and fourth game of the season. The matchup was the first between the two programs, and the first time Quinnipiac women’s basketball played an opponent ranked in the top five at home.

The Bobcats opened up with the first five points of the game off a Cur’Tiera Haywood layup and Morris three-pointer. As Indiana crept onto the board, Quinnipiac made relentless defensive efforts off the glass to maintain possession. The Bobcats lead by six points at the end of the first quarter.

“We set the tone that we’re here to play, we’re here to win,” Fabbri said. “That’s nothing new for us.”

Big10 Player of the Week Mackenzie Holmes was held scoreless until two free throws seven minutes into the second quarter. Indiana head coach Teri Moren rotated her players frequently, so when Holmes sat, Kiandra Browne came in to make an immediate impact with her height and power at the rim. The rotations weren’t enough to stop the bleeding as Quinnipiac’s team-wide contributions kept them up heading into the half.

Indiana continued to close in despite double-digit points from Mackenzie DeWees (15), Morris (13), and Rose Caverly (11). Indiana’s Grace Berger lit up for 17 points, while Ali Platberg (12), Nicole Cardano-Hillary (10), and Holmes scored frequently.

The Hoosiers took the lead after Morris fouled Berger and sent her to the line for two good free throws. Indiana extended a four-point lead at the end of the third to an eight-point lead and 67-59 comeback win.

“The physicality and the physical tiredness of it led to our mental tiredness, so we started turning the ball over a little bit and then started missing our usual shots,” DeWees said.

Morris earned her first double-double of the season and DeWees added three steals to her 19 total on the season. Cardano-Hillary led the Hoosiers defensively with eight rebounds as they improve to 4-0 in non-conference play.

The 2-2 Bobcats will travel to George Washington for a 5 p.m. Monday night game in D.C., while Indiana jets to the Bahamas to take on Stanford and Miami in the Baha Mar Pink Flamingo Classic.