Indiana Basketball's Historic Season
Updated: May 7
Indiana Women's Basketball has had a season for ages and they are not done yet. On February 19, 2023, they clinched their first Big Ten women’s Basketball regular season title in 40 years with an 83-60 win over Purdue. With Iowa’s loss on February 21, 2023, the Hoosiers clinched the outright title of the Big Ten conference.
Indiana is currently 26-1 on the season with their only loss coming to Michigan State in December. And Indiana has played some top talent this season. They are 9-0 against AP Top-25 opponents this season which is the most in the country. Most of those wins came in Big Ten play and were usually not close games. The Hoosiers made more history with 16 Big Ten wins this season, the most in school history while going 16-0 across the entire regular season at home. They set multiple Indiana Women's Basketball attendance records this season but finished on a sell-out game with 17,222 fans present at Assembly Hall, for the first time ever.
The Hoosiers started this season ranked 11 in the AP polls but have worked their way all the way up to #2 and have shown no signs of slowing down. While they don’t have much wiggle room at the top due to South Carolina’s dominance, they have shown us that they are a top contender for the tournament. Indiana did receive their first first-place vote of the season this past week which shows how close the two teams are. Indiana may have just made the Elite Eight for the first time last season, but they are making their case for a run to the national championship. They are led by head coach Teri Moren who has been with the program for the last nine years.
Indiana is led by stars Mackenzie Holmes and Grace Berger. The two seniors have been integral to Indiana’s success this season. Holmes is averaging 22.6 points per game this season while Berger has 12.2 ppg. Berger missed eight games this season due to a knee injury and Indiana’s only loss came during Berger’s time out. While she averages almost 10 points less than Holmes, Berger’s impact and leadership on the court are next to none. From her ball-handling skills to her midrange jumper, to her impeccable passing, to her competitive spirit that you see in every game, Berger is one of the best players to wear an Indiana uniform, no doubt about it.
For Holmes, she is having a star-studded season, averaging almost seven more points per game than she did last season. Holmes has made her case for Big Ten Player of the Year averaging 22.6 ppg, 7.4 rebounds, and 69.2 field goal percentage on the season. Holmes has been the player that is stepping up in big moments for Indiana, leading the Hoosiers when Berger was out with her injury.
Another player that has been huge for the Hoosiers is Chloe Moore-McNeil, who has played the most minutes this season. Moore-McNeil might have the highlighted stat line in points as Berger and Holmes do but her impact can’t get passed up. She leads the team in assists per game with 4.9 while averaging 9.2 ppg and 4.1 rebounds. Moore-McNeil’s one-on-one defense and quiet confidence in the backcourt has helped Indiana to their historic season. In Indiana’s game against Iowa on February 9, 2023, Moore-McNeil stood up to one of the nation’s best players in Caitlin Clark, forcing her to a field goal percentage of just 43 percent with 12 buckets on 28 shots. In Moore-McNeil's freshmen year, she averaged only 7.3 points and now two years later, she is averaging the most minutes on the team, showing Teri Moren’s confidence in her.
Sydney Parrish decided to go to Oregon for the first two years of her college career despite growing up only 15 minutes from Indiana. She transferred home this season from Oregon, saying that the draw home was too strong to pass up. Parrish is Indiana's third-leading scorer this season behind Berger and Holmes. She is averaging 12.1 points this season compared to her 8.5 last season at Oregon. She is also averaging 5.6 rebounds per game. She said that
Teri Moren has taken this program to new levels. Breaking the all-time record for most wins by an Indiana women's basketball head coach in January, Moren has built a powerhouse in Indiana.
In the 1980s, Indiana women’s basketball had only been to one NCAA tournament; that was in 1983, the last time Indiana had won the Big Ten title as well. Now Moren has brought them to an Elite Eight, won the first Big Ten title in 40 years, and sold out Indiana’s Assembly Hall for the first time in Indiana women’s basketball history.
The Hoosiers have a projected #1 seed in the NCAA tournament as they sit on a 26-1 record (program record for wins in a season), 14-game winning streak, and highest-ever Associated Press ranking at second overall in the country. Indiana has clinched the top overall seed in the Big Ten tournament but has one more game to get through before reaching the tournament. That game? Against Caitlin Clark and the Iowa Hawkeyes who are looking to end their own season on a high note and get the second seed in the Big Ten tournament. Indiana won the previous matchup between these teams this season 87-78, as Berger and Holmes combined for 50 points. The Hoosiers shot 50 percent from three, going 7-14, and were just under 50 percent in field goal percentage at 46.8 percent. Clark was able to put up 35 points against the Hoosiers but the rest of the Iowa team struggled. They wrap up the regular season on February 26, 2023, at 2 pm on ESPN. Iowa has a sellout crowd ready to welcome the Hoosiers and it’s bound to be a game for the ages.