Illinois women’s basketball looks to bring win streak back to Champaign with matchup against Purdue


Jacob Slabosz

Junior guard Genesis Bryan goes for a layup against Indiana on Jan. 18, making the score 47-40 Indiana. The Illini will face off against Purdue on Thursday.

By Rachel Oh, Staff Writer

After beating Northwestern on the road with a close score of 67-64 last Sunday, No. 22 Illinois women’s basketball will head back to Champaign tomorrow night for a matchup against Purdue at the State Farm Center. 

Purdue women’s basketball is led by head coach Katie Gearlds. Purdue has a 13-6 record on the season and 4-5 in Big Ten play. The Boilermakers went 17-15 last season with a 7-11 mark in conference action. Purdue is one of eight Big Ten teams this season to receive votes in the AP Top-25 poll, which came in the week of Dec. 5.

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The Illini on the other hand are in the midst of their winningest season in 10 years, having lost just four games on the year, with all but one coming against Top-25 teams. The unprecedented turnaround for Illinois has primarily been spearheaded by transfer contributions from junior guards Makira Cook and Genesis Bryant along with increased production from returners such as junior forward Kendall Bostic and sophomore guard Adalia McKenzie.

Illinois head coach Shauna Green attended an interview earlier today where she shared her thoughts on tomorrow’s game. After winning sixteen games already this season, Green believes that the team is starting to get a grip on how to secure back to back wins.

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    “I think we’re continuing to learn as a team about how to win consistently,” Green said. “This is kind of new for the first time through with this team and now we have a target a little bit more so on our back than we started.” 

    Despite all the hard work and practice that’s required to keep the team in its best shape, Green makes an effort to ensure the team doesn’t get burnt out. This materializes in ways such as trying not to go over an hour and thirty minutes at practice. 

    “No doubt about it — we need our legs,” Green stressed. “We’re going to do everything we can in order to make sure that happens.” 

    Again and again, Green preaches how it’s important to take it one day at a time. A big believer that nothing is promised and anything can happen, Green approaches each game for what it is, tackling that game and that one game only. 

    “You got to continue to have a 1-0 mindset or you’re not going to get to the postseason,” Green said. “I don’t want to put added pressure, but they’re smart enough to understand. If you go and handle your business day to day and you handle every game with the mindset that they’re a top-five team, then the outcomes take care of themselves.”

    Illinois women’s basketball will go into tomorrow’s game ready to bring home another win, taking it one game at a time.


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