After trailing by five points at halftime, the University of Indianapolis women’s basketball team bounced back in the second half to claim a 74-42 victory on Saturday, Feb. 1, over the University of Wisconsin-Parkside Rangers.
Four Greyhounds finished with scores in double-digits, led by junior guard Kelly Walter, who scored 19 points in the conference win. Walter finished the game with five 3-pointers on offense, while picking up four steals on defense.
Prior to their victory on Saturday, the Greyhounds suffered a triple-overtime loss on Thursday, Jan. 30, to the Lewis University Flyers, 111-105. The loss dropped UIndy to second place in the Great Lakes Valley Conference East.
The Greyhounds won, however, on Saturday, Jan. 25, ousting the McKendree University Bearcats on the road by 30 points, 102-72.
UIndy moved up two spots in the national rankings after three straight wins, from Jan. 20-25, to No. 16. In the three-game stretch, the smallest margin of victory for UIndy was 22 points. Prior to last Thursday, the Greyhounds led the Great Lakes Valley Conference in field goal percentage at 48.2, which was also fifth in all of Division II. The team also has showcased strong defensive play, as they were ranked No. 8 in the nation in blocks, with 5.3 per game.
Senior guard Rose Savela credited much of the Greyhounds’ recent success to a number of things. The first factor, she said, is the team’s experience, with six other seniors who have been playing together since their freshman year.
“I think having that—people who have been through this before—allows us to not have to work out the kinks that other teams have to,” Savela said.
Savela also mentioned the Greyhounds’ ranking. She said that it was nice to start out under the radar and prove that the team could perform at a high level. She also spoke highly of the Greyhounds’ bench and team chemistry.
“From top to bottom [of the lineup], any one of those players can play the majority of the game and never miss a beat,” Savela said.
Head Women’s Basketball Coach Constantin Popa shared many of the same beliefs as Savela, in terms of the Greyhounds’ success this season. He attributed it to the experience of the team’s seven seniors, as well as bench production.
“I always expect to have a really good team,” Popa said. “It’s good to be ranked, obviously, but the way I look at things, I want to see where we are at the end of the season.”
Looking forward to the rest of the season, Popa said the team needs to work on decision making in the Greyhounds’ fast-play style and conditioning.
“There’s always something to improve,” Popa said. “It’s the second part of the season right now, and you have to stay in good condition. The longer you go into the season, the more tired you’re going to get.”
The Greyhounds’ next game will take place against Maryville University tomorrow night, Feb. 6, at 6:30 p.m.