Independent Student Newspaper Since 1969

The Badger Herald

Independent Student Newspaper Since 1969

The Badger Herald

Independent Student Newspaper Since 1969

The Badger Herald


Badgers and Stone set for final stretch

The UW women’s basketball team has had its share of moral victories this season, but sometimes they can only go so far. While the players have battled to the end in every game, most of the time the Badgers have unfortunately wound up on the losing end.

The team has tried to remain focused on the positives despite compiling a six-game losing streak prior to last weekend, in which they had come so close at times to getting over the hump, only to be fooled by fate. The Badgers dug down deep and managed to keep their poise in the closing moments to celebrate their first victory in the past seven tries by stopping Indiana 66-62 on Sunday.

“I joked with my team afterwards, saying that if I had picked up a microphone with about a minute to play and asked every fan in the stands if they were saying, ‘Oh, here we go again,’ how many would have responded,” said UW head coach Lisa Stone. “But we closed it down.”


Now, with the monkey finally off its back, the Badgers close out their regular season this week. The team will travel to Illinois to take on the Illini Thursday and then host the Ohio State Buckeyes on Sunday night.

Even with a losing record, the Badgers will not lie down for anyone in the upcoming Big Ten tournament and has showed many times this season they can compete with the best.

For the Badgers to see postseason, they would have to win four games in five days.

“As hard as this season may appear, our team is playing great right now and this is the time to play well,” coach Stone said.

Wilson responds

Sophomore forward Jordan Wilson made sure the Badgers sent Indiana home with a loss Sunday. Wilson had a career-high 24 points and posted the third double-double of her career by grabbing 10 boards.

“Jordan Wilson was heroic; I think she had a tremendous game,” coach Stone said. “Someone mentioned to me today that she was very Barb Franke-like. Some people remember her going to the basket and some of those leaners … it was good for Jordan.”

In Wisconsin’s 60-39 loss at Indiana in early January, Wilson played only seven minutes and never got in the scoring column. Since Wilson was inserted back into the starting lineup against Northwestern, she has been a mainstay, starting the last seven games. As a result, she has raised her numbers to career best 6.3 points and 5.3 rebounds per game.

An all-out team effort

Wisconsin is not a one-person team, and a variety of players have stepped up, depending on the night. Now, as the season winds down, teammates who have played together all season are finding each other more, and the team’s chemistry is beginning to show.

“It’s becoming quite evident in our team,” coach Stone said. “We’re flying around, getting loose balls. We’re still rebounding; our defense has been pretty decent. We’re running some switching defenses right now and it’s causing some teams some problems. The fact that Jordan is playing the way she’s playing — that hunger, that thirst, that competitiveness — is rubbing off on the rest (of the team).”

What has benefited the Badgers all season is their tremendous work ethic and their unselfish play. They know how to find the player with the hot hand at any particular stretch in the game.

“Jordan was the hero of last night’s game, but in part because of all her teammates,” coach Stone said.

Lello’s status

Senior post-player Lello Gebisa injured her ankle in the Iowa game and was forced to sit after starting the game six of eight from the field. She did not play in the Penn State game, but returned in the Indiana game and posted six points in 17 minutes of action.

“I like having Lello back, but she’ll rehab and I’m expecting her to be very strong and ready to go,” coach Stone said. “But who starts on Thursday, that I don’t know.”

The color of the jersey

With the Wisconsin men’s basketball team falling to Illinois last Wednesday, there has been some discussion of the impact that the teams’ uniforms had. Illinois sported their orange jerseys instead of their normal white home jerseys. With Wisconsin in red, the similarly colored jersey confused viewers and it has been suggested it may have also affected the game.

As a precaution, Stone said that her Badgers might bring along both sets of jerseys when they travel to Champaign.

“Wow … that was something else,” coach Stone said. “That was very hard to watch. I tried to watch the men’s game before we played Penn State, and I couldn’t tell who was who. I’m not sure what their home uniforms are, but we might pack those extra ones, just in case.”

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