Women’s basketball reveals schedule

By Stuart Lieberman

Since its disappointing loss to Purdue in the final seconds of the Big Ten Championship last season, the Jolette Law’s Illinois women’s basketball program has had it rough. Lori Bjork and Chelsea Buher left the team, and this summer Law had to teach many new team members her style of play. On Thursday, the Illini found out the path to the NCAA Tournament this season will be even harder than they already thought it would be. The team announced its schedule on Thursday, which includes a slate of tough non-conference opponents.

In non-conference play, Illinois will face big schools in Temple, Missouri, Maryland, Virginia and North Carolina. The squad will face the Tigers in a border battle in Champaign on Nov. 19, and it will play against a 2008 NCAA Elite Eight in the Terrapins in the Cancun Caribbean Challenge in Cancun, Mexico, during the Thanksgiving weekend. The Illini will wrap-up conference play against North Carolina in Myrtle Beach, S.C., on Dec. 20. The game will be a homecoming for Law, who grew up in Florence, S.C., an hour away from Myrtle Beach.

On Dec. 22, Illinois will open Big Ten play against Purdue at Assembly Hall. It will play every team in the conference twice except for Michigan and Michigan State. Returning players will have their chance to revenge last year’s buzzer-beating loss to the Boilermakers, who ruined their only chance of qualifying for the NCAA Tournament.