MADISON, Wis. — This is surely an exciting new year for the Hoosiers as they continue to cruise through conference play defeating the Wisconsin Badgers 76-53 on the road.
"This is a great win," Indiana coach Teri Moren said. "Any time you can win on the road in a kind of quiet atmosphere, we had to bring our own energy. That's a good day for us."
This is the 11th straight road win for Indiana and tied with the 2019-20 season for the best Big Ten start with a 4-0 record.
The Hoosiers were led by graduate student guard Ali Patberg for the second game in a row. She put up 18 points, four rebounds and three assists.
"I really liked some of the things we did," Moren said. "We just kind of had to keep chipping away. I thought Ali Patberg was tremendous."
Junior forward Makenzie Holmes added 16 points and eight rebounds. The Hoosiers shot 48.3 percent from the floor compared to Wisconsin's 35.7 percent.
However, this game didn't come without struggle. Moren admitted she thought her group started off a little sluggish. The Hoosiers chipped away at an early deficit but ultimately used a 12-2 run to gain traction coming out of the first quarter leading 17-12.
Senior guard Grace Berger started off the second with a jumper. Wisconsin kept at the Hoosiers dwindling down the deficit to just four points with seven minutes left.
It didn't take long for Indiana to show off their shots as they closed the gap by 15 points off a Nicole Cardaño-Hillary three-pointer.
The Hoosiers fell off a bit in the third. Patberg said Indiana's defense wasn't as sound as it could be.
"Our focused waned a little," Patberg said. "I think a lot of their baskets came from not staying in front of our man and them backdooring us. I think that third quarter we allowed our focus to go defensively, but then we picked it right back up."
At one point, the Badgers came within 13 off a pair of free throws by sophomore guard Brooke Schramek, but the Hoosiers would take off from there without looking back.
"I think we were just pretty deliberate," Moren said. "We knew we were were probably going to see a little bit of man and probably more of a zone, and that's what we did in the second half, just had to have really good ball movement, get the defense to shift from side to side, be very decisive when we were putting the ball inside to Mack and show some patience."
Holmes and Patberg scored back-to-back buckets in the fourth and got their defensive juices flowing once again to maintain more than a 20-point lead over the Badgers.
"Just like the last game, it's our job to go out and execute," Patberg said. "That's what it is. It's our focus. It's our attention to details on the defensive end. I know that's what makes us so good on defense."
Up next, the Hoosiers take an 8-day break before Nebraska comes to Bloomington on Jan. 13. Tipoff is scheduled for 6 p.m. on Big Ten Network.
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