The University of Wisconsin women’s basketball team (7-20, 2-12 Big Ten) will face off against Illinois (8-19, 3-11 Big Ten) Wednesday night at the Kohl Center for their last home game of the season.
With the Fighting Illini having gone winless on the road thus far, their matchup Wednesday will be one that the Badgers look to exploit.
Wisconsin has managed to split their last four outings, taking their two most recent home games against some of the conference’s more meager opponents. A win against Illinois to close out their 2016-17 home campaign would be just another step forward for head coach Jonathan Tsipis’s squad, which will inevitably be focused on staying out of last place, with the Big Ten tournament on the horizon.
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Going off their largely parallel seasons, both teams stack up well on paper. Illinois has now lost nine in a row and haven’t won a game in more than a month. Unfortunately for them, they’ll catch the Badgers at a time where they’ve bounced back as of late, trying to rebound from their own debilitating 10-game losing streak.
Even with their recent turmoil, Illinois is statistically superior to Wisconsin in points per game, points allowed, field goal percentage and notably free throw percentage, which they do more efficiently than anyone in the conference.
Notwithstanding, the Illini are arguably the Big Ten’s worst rebounding team, an area of the game that the Badgers have performed modestly well in all season long.
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Its advantage on the glass in mind, crashing the boards should be the central element of Wisconsin’s game plan. In conjunction with second chance points, limiting turnovers will foreseeably be stressed with urgency, considering Wisconsin’s trouble handling the ball in their last outing, in which they coughed it up 25 times.
If they’re to secure the win Wednesday, the Badgers will be tied with the Illini for 12th in conference standings, certainly an expression of the strides they’ve made as of late.
The game will tip off at 7 p.m. CT and will air on BTN Plus.