MORAGA, Calif. – Four players scored in double figures backed by 20-plus point performances by senior guard Tyra Buss and freshman guard Jaelynn Penn, but it wasn’t enough as Indiana fell to host Saint Mary’s, 88-82, in the Hilton Concord Classic on Saturday afternoon.
Buss led with a game-high 24 points and added seven assists, four steals and two rebounds. Penn shot 50 percent from 3-point range (4-for-8) to set a new career-high 21 points, nine rebounds and three steals as the duo were named to the All-Tournament Team.
Indiana shot 44.4 percent from the floor on the afternoon including a 52.6 percent clip from beyond the arc (10-for-19). They were much improved from the free throw line, shooting 80 percent (16-for-20). Joining Buss and Penn were freshman guard Bendu Yeaney with 15 points and senior forward Amanda Cahill who added 10 points.
The tournament host Saint Mary’s 58.5 field goal percentage including a 56.3 percent clip from 3-point ranged helped them to the win, who also won the rebounding margin, 35-27.
The Hoosiers found themselves in foul trouble in the early going, with Royster picking up her second foul with just under three minutes into the game. Saint Mary’s would increase its lead to five before a floater by Buss cut it back down to three with 6:57 remaining. Cahill tied up the game at 9-all with a corner 3-pointer but the Gaels pushed its lead back up to five, 16-11. A 3-pointer by Penn and Buss layup help IU keep it within three after the first, trailing 19-16.
Saint Mary’s took its largest lead of the half/game opening the second quarter on a 6-0 run. A three-point play by Royster got IU on the board with 7:49 left before halftime. Warthen’s 3-pointer from the right side got Indiana to within three, 33-30, but that would be the closest it would get. Saint Mary’s would extend its lead to eight at halftime, 47-39, as they would score at the buzzer.
Scoring the first five points of the quarter, Indiana shot 75 percent from 3-point range in the second half as the game would change leads four times in the final 20 minutes. Two at the line for Penn and a triple by Yeaney made it a 60-60 game with 4:09 remaining. Yeaney helped Indiana take its first lead of the game as she cleaned up a missed layup and hit one at the line.
After a Gaels’s bucket, Indiana countered with a Penn 3-pointer but didn’t score for the final two minutes of the third, trailing 68-64. Pushing its lead back up to eight with less three minutes off the clock in the fourth, IU would stage a comeback as Saint Mary’s went without a field goal for five minutes. Royster at the line and a 3-pointer by Yeaney tied it up at 76-76 with 3:36 remaining.
Finally hitting with 2:37 left, the Gaels got back-to-back layups and take a four-point lead with 46 seconds remaining. They would eventually go up by five but a big three from Penn made it a two-point game, 84-82. But forced to foul and in the bonus, Saint Mary’s made four-straight free throws to seal the game.
2017 Hilton Concord Classic All-Tournament Team
MVP – Stella Beck, Saint Mary’s
Tyra Buss, Indiana
Sydney Raggio, Saint Mary’s
Jaelynn Penn, Indiana
Deanna Kuzmanic, UAB
Akilah Jennings, UC Santa Barbara
Indiana returns to Bloomington to host No. 4 Louisville for the Big Ten/ACC Challenge. Tipoff is slated for 8 p.m. ET at Simon Skjodt Assembly Hall live on the Big Ten Network.