Can Indiana Women's Basketball Shock the World against #1 South Carolina?

The Hoosiers are a 16.5 point underdog against the Gamecocks on Friday night.

Indiana's Mackenzie Holmes (54), Sydney Parrish (33), and Sara Scalia (14) celebrate after the game
Indiana's Mackenzie Holmes (54), Sydney Parrish (33), and Sara Scalia (14) celebrate after the game / Rich Janzaruk/Herald-Times / USA TODAY

Indiana got over the hump with their 75-68 win against Oklahoma. They've punched their ticket to the Sweet 16. The Hoosiers' reward? A date with #1 South Carolina.

Indiana Women's Basketball head coach Teri Moren and the Hoosiers know what they are up against. Like Sonja Hogg, Pat Summit, and Geno Auriemma before her, South Carolina Gamecocks head coach Dawn Staley has built a dynasty in women's college basketball. South Carolina has won 70 of its last 71 games.

The 2022 National Champions are on a mission to erase last season's loss to Iowa in the Final Four. The Gamecocks are deep and talented. Indiana has to have everything go right to win this game. They'll be in Albany, New York, for this game, so there will be no Assembly Hall crowd to get them through.

How can they pull the upset?

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Everything has to go right...and wrong

It goes without saying, but if the Hoosiers are going to put the upset of all upsets, they have to play their best game of the season. Moren has shortened the bench, so the starters have to play the game of their lives. Everyone has to have career days to pull the upset.

Conversely, South Carolina has to play its worst game of the season. Indiana needs players to miss open shots and defensive miscues from a team that prides itself on defense. South Carolina is also deep. Indiana needs their bench to be ineffective as well.

Players to Watch

Kamilla Cardoso is a 6'7 force in the paint. She leads the Gamecocks in scoring (13.9) and rebounding (9.5). It will be interesting to see how they defend her in the paint. If they double-team Cardoso, Te-Hina Paopao is their best three-point shooter.

Chloe Moore-McNeil might not be Indiana's best player, but she has the responsibility of guarding Paopao and getting Indiana in the right offensive sets. Sara Scalia needs to show up like she did against Fairfield, not like she did against Oklahoma.