Michigan women beat top-5 opponent for 2nd time this season

ANN ARBOR, Mich. (AP) — Naz Hillmon scored 21 points, Emily Kiser grabbed a career-high 16 rebounds and No. 6 Michigan beat fifth-ranked Indiana 65-50 on Monday night for its second win over a top-five opponent this season.

Michigan scored the opening nine points of the game and never trailed to knock the Hoosiers out of sole possession of first place in the Big Ten Conference. The Wolverines had never beaten a top-five team at home, but did win at then-No. 5 Baylor in overtime on Dec. 19.

“Two great teams playing and we got the better of them tonight on a day when we turned the basketball over a ton in the first half,” Michigan coach Kim Barnes Arico said. “We talked about staying disciplined and trying to stay better in the second half. The way we rebounded the ball and defended was exceptional. Proud of our effort today.”.

The Wolverines held Indiana to just six points in the third quarter and their lead grew to as many as 16 in the fourth. Indiana pulled within 59-50 with 3:09 left but missed its final four shots as its nine-game winning streak came to an end.

Leigha Brown and Laila Phelia each added 11 points for Michigan (19-2, 10-1 Big Ten). The Wolverines battled turnover issues with 25, but used a 52-20 advantage on the glass for 14 second-chance points.

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Michigan led 32-30 at halftime despite turning it over 17 times.

Nicole Cardano-Hillary had 16 points and eight steals for Indiana (14-3, 6-1). Grace Berger added 13 points with six rebounds and six steals, and Ali Patberg scored 10. The Hoosiers hadn’t played since Jan. 16 because of COVID-19 protocols.

“Disappointed that we didn’t play very well tonight. We’re not a program that makes excuses,” Indiana coach Teri Moren said. “I do think we looked like a team that had been off for a couple weeks and looked really rusty and had no real rhythm, no fluidity in anything we did offensively but on the flip side of that, I loved our effort defensively.”.

Cardano-Hillary and Berger each made just 6 of 15 field goals and Patberg was 4 of 13 as the Hoosiers shot just 33.3 percent, including 3 of 14 from distance.

Both teams play again on Thursday. Michigan goes on the road to face Illinois and Indiana hosts Minnesota.

More AP women’s college basketball: https://apnews.Com/hub/womens-college-basketball and https://twitter.Com/AP_Top25.

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