MINNEAPOLIS (AP) -- Minnesota's 70-62 win over Indiana Thursday was its second straight game in which the outcome wasn't decided until the final minutes. The Gophers figure learning to play under that kind of pressure can only help in the long run.
Four times in the game's final 13 minutes the Hoosiers closed to within a single point, but the Gophers (11-4, 3-1 Big Ten) were able to get the loose balls and hit the key shots to stop Indiana's nine-game winning streak. The victory comes less than a week after Minnesota rallied to win at Illinois 52-48.
"We need to know to know what to do in specific situations to allow us to win those close games," said Brittany McCoy, one of three Gophers in double figures. "The past two games have been real good learning experiences for us."
Indiana (10-3, 3-1) closed to within 59-58 on two free throws by Jori Davis when the Gophers scored six straight points to take command of the game. The spurt began when freshman Kiara Buford made a 3-point basket from the deep left corner, pumping her fist in celebration following her only score of the night
"I was struggling in the first half and I had to snap myself out of it, I had to be ready," Buford said.
Ashley Ellis-Milan scored a season-high 18 points and grabbed 10 rebounds for her sixth double-double of the season.
The Hoosiers pulled to within 65-62 in the final minute, but coach Felisha Legette-Jack was hit with a technical foul and Emily Fox made both free throws to stop the comeback. Fox wound up with 15 points.
"The technical didn't help, and I take that responsibility, I feel I let the team down," said Legette-Jack. "Sometimes your emotions can get you in, and sometimes it can bite you, too."
Whitney Thomas had 22 points and 15 rebounds for the Hoosiers, who got 15 points from Amber Jackson along with 10 points and 10 rebounds from Jamie Braun.
Minnesota scored the game's first six points, and led by as many as nine at 22-13 on a basket by Ellis-Milan. That's when Indiana turned things around, allowing just one Minnesota basket in a span of nearly six minutes. Thomas hit a jumper from the lane to complete a 14-2 run and a 27-24 lead for the Hoosiers.
Fox took matters into her own hands, making a long 3-pointer to put Minnesota ahead for good, then followed with a steal, a driving layup and foul shot to stretch the lead to 30-27.
Minnesota stretched the lead back to seven early in the second half before Indiana fought back to tie the score at 43-43. The Gophers regained the lead for good on a basket by Zoe Harper and two free throws by McCoy, but never led by more than four points until the closing minutes of the game.