Women’s hoops hits the road

Adam Babcock The Daily Illini Illinois guard Chelsea Gordon, left, drives through Butlers Candyce Brown during the second half of the season-opener at Assembly Hall, Sunday, November 12, 2006. Gordon had 12 points and four grabs, aiding in the 65-47 Illinois victory.

Adam Babcock The Daily Illini Illinois guard Chelsea Gordon, left, drives through Butler’s Candyce Brown during the second half of the season-opener at Assembly Hall, Sunday, November 12, 2006. Gordon had 12 points and four grabs, aiding in the 65-47 Illinois victory.

By Dave Fultz

After disposing of their first two exhibition opponents handily and wearing out Butler in their first regular season game on Sunday afternoon, the Illini will try to keep the momentum going and make a few needed adjustments as they travel north to play the University of Illinois at Chicago tonight.

Butler kept Sunday’s game close before the Illini shut them down on the defensive end of the floor and pulled away in the closing minutes.

“It was the first game, and anytime you have a first game, there is going to be those kinds of runs,” said head coach Theresa Grentz after the game.

“But I thought that we were able to control the game from a defensive standpoint,” she said.

UIC won their regular season opener against Western Michigan University in a close game. WMU held the lead with as little as three minutes left in the game and only won by a final of 87-83.

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    Freshman guard Jessie Miller shot 86 percent from the field with 21 points in total and a team-high six rebounds with six assists.

    The Illini realize that UIC is another team and another game, but feel with preparation they will be ready.

    “I’ve seen some film on them,” Grentz said.

    “They are probably going to press us, they’ve got some guards up on the front that really get after people. I can see them coming after us and we are just going to have to figure out a way to go over the top of them or get the ball around with screens,” she added.

    After their first three games, the Illini are ready to take all that they can from their recent success.

    “There are a lot of things that we can work on,” said sophomore forward Chelsea Gordon after Sunday’s win over Butler. “We can use the games we’ve played so far as a learning tool. We can shoot from the outside, we can go inside; it’s all just another step towards the team chemistry that we will need this season.”