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Michigan women’s basketball: Leigha Brown scores career high in Wolverines’ loss

On Monday, No. 13 Michigan welcomed No. 6 Indiana to the Crisler Center in Ann Arbor, MI. Despite the loss, Leigha Brown scored a career high.



Mar 26, 2022; Wichita, KS, USA; Michigan Wolverines guard Leigha Brown (32) drives to the basket during the game against the South Dakota Coyotes in the Wichita regional semifinals of the women's college basketball NCAA Tournament at INTRUST Bank Arena. Mandatory Credit: William Purnell-USA TODAY Sports

No. 13 Michigan women’s basketball (16-4, 6-3 Big Ten) dropped an important conference matchup against the No. 6  Indiana Hoosiers (18-1, 8-1 Big Ten). The Wolverines are now 2-3 against ranked opponents this season.

Indiana downs Michigan at Crisler

Michigan started the game off right, winning the tip off and scoring a basket immediately thereafter. This was the only lead the Wolverines would hold, despite keeping a manageable deficit all game.

A primary reason for this was Indiana’s impressive rebounding. The Hoosiers would finish the game with 16 more rebounds than the Wolverines, giving them more offensive opportunities. Indiana senior Mackenzie Holmes played a large role in the Hoosiers boarding, leading the team with 9 rebounds.

Poor defending and rebounding was the primary reason the Wolverines lost the game.The Michigan defense left lots of deep jump shots wide open for Indiana. While the Hoosiers struggled to convert early in the first quarter, the buckets eventually began to fall and Indiana began to take full advantage of the 3 ball.

The Hoosiers finished the night with nine 3-pointers from 18 attempts. Indiana converted 51.6 percent of all field goals and finished with 11 more assists than the Wolverines. By the middle of the third quarter, the Hoosiers began to pull away by taking a 17 point lead over the Wolverines.

Michigan had a valiant comeback effort, bringing it as close as a six point game late in the fourth quarter. Ultimately, the Wolverines dug themselves into too deep of a hole early on, and were unable to play catch-up against a top 10 Indiana team. Michigan lost with a final score of 92-83.

While they were unable to come away with a win, the Wolverines played an incredible game on offense, especially considering the strength of the Indiana defense. Michigan had some mild turnover issues in the first half, but putting up 83 points shows the strength of the Wolverine offense.

Leigha Brown scores career high

After the game, I asked fifth-year guard Leigha Brown if the team felt like they needed to change anything offensively after such a high scoring game. Brown responded “I think turnovers, especially for me individually, was a major part in that first half. They’re such a great transition team that you can’t give them opportunities that are live ball”. She added, “Obviously we scored 83 on them and that’s more than what they normally average teams to get, but I think there’s always room for improvement and things you can fix.”

Brown played a huge part in the Wolverines offensive success, scoring a career high 31 points despite the team’s loss. When asked to elaborate on her career performance, Brown ended by saying “I would rather have had zero points and won.”

Sophomore guard Laila Phelia also had an impressive performance, putting up 21 points which included two 3-pointers. Despite Phelia and Brown’s strong performance, Michigan’s poor defense and rebounding led to their second home loss of the season.

Michigan women’s basketball will travel to College Park, MD to take on the No. 10 Maryland Terrapins (16-4, 7-2 Big Ten) this Thursday at 6:30 P.M. EST.

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Augie Pasche is the associate editor for Blue by Ninety. He covers Michigan football, basketball, wrestling and baseball.