For the second straight game, senior co-captain LeeAnn Bies relinquished her starting spot to fellow captain Raina Goodlow. Bies, a preseason All-Big Ten selection, had scored just 23 points and grabbed 10 rebounds through three conference games, and Michigan coach Sue Guevara was hoping a new starting lineup would help jumpstart the Wolverines in the early minutes.

This week in practice, Guevara indicated that she had stressed the importance of the high-low offense – the bread and butter of the Wolverines this season – which had been lacking in recent games, and she hoped to reinforce against Indiana Sunday. After a solid week of practice, Bies returned to nonconference form, scoring 19 points, grabbing eight rebounds and going a perfect 9-for-9 from the line.

“Bies played (Sunday) like she has been practicing,” Guevara said. “We worked on the high-low all week.”

The week of practice helped the team reestablish its preseason dominance in the post. This is due in large part to Bies studying the game from the sidelines. Although she isn’t used to her current role of coming off the bench, Bies attributed her recent success to watching the game from the sidelines and making the most of her minutes when she does come in.

“Coming off the bench gives you a chance to see what’s going on, what the tempo is, and take in the whole game,” Bies said. “(It gives the opportunity) to come in and see what needs to be done on defense and what we’re looking for on offense. It gives me an advantage.”

Turnovers? What turnovers?: Despite winning their first conference game of the season, the Wolverines committed 28 turnovers, the second-highest total of the season. Because Michigan held on for the win, the turnovers seemed to take a backseat and were justified because the Wolverines were attempting to pound the ball inside.

“I think some of the turnovers came because we tried to make things happen before the double team came,” Guevara said.

Forward Jennifer Smith turned the ball over six times but said that, despite the high number of turnovers, they were part of the team working out some of the kinks from previous games.

“I definitely think we need to cut down on turnovers, but now with our first win, everything will probably start coming together,” Smith said.

New ringleader: At the beginning of the season, freshman Rachael Carney saw very little playing time as fellow freshmen Mie Burlin and Niki Reams started and Lauren Andrews was the third option coming off the bench. Now Carney has moved into the starting lineup and has become the dominant floor leader for the Wolverines.

The role of the point guard is to make sure that everyone is on the same page. Smith acknowledges Carney’s ability to assume that role when she’s on the floor, especially at such a young age.

“I think she’s done a really nice job stepping up to be a leader as a point guard,” Smith said. “She always makes sure we know what defense we’re in, calls out the plays early and gets us together to make sure we know what we’re doing.”

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