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Illinois drops two more games, on a 12-game losing streak

Illinois throttled again in convincing fashion by Big Ten foes.


The drought continues.

Illinois Women's Basketball started the month of February off on the wrong note, as they were beaten soundly in its latest set of games in what has become a weekly routine for the program.

I, for one, would love to cover a victory, but they just can't seem to get over the hump. They even set a new level of ineptitude on Thursday night against Nebraska, as they scored just one point in the second quarter on their way to a 62-47 loss at Pinnacle Bank Arena.

One bright spot is the resurgence of Cierra Rice as a nice scoring option. She led the team with 13 points and proved again that her early season woes were a bit exaggerated.

For Nebraska, it was a balanced scoring attack, and no one player scored more than 11 (Nicea Eliely) but five players scored at least eight, and its offensive system allowed for multiple players to contribute in big or small ways.

The same cannot be said for Illinois last week, however, as one or two players carried the offensive load, and lack of contributions from the bench left Illinois scrabbling for anything they could get.

It was a similar story on Sunday against Purdue. Alex Wittinger (once again) played magnificently to the tune of 20 points and eight rebounds in what has become a fantastic junior season for the native of Delano, Minnesota.

Unfortunately, the rest of the team just could not pick up the slack. Cierra Rice finished with 8 and no other player on the team scored more than six.

For Purdue, it was the double-headed guard duo of Andreona Keys (21 points) and Dominique Oden (22 points) who paced the Boilermakers on their way to a 73-54 victory.

It's starting to sound like a broken record, but I truly believe in Nancy Fahey and her ability to lift this program from the depths. But like every major revenue Illinois squad, it's going to take time.

Meanwhile, Illinois is back at it on Thursday against the Indiana Hoosiers in Bloomington, looking to end its 12-game losing streak.