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This Week in Illini Athletics: Sept 26 - Oct 2, 2022

Everywhere you look the Illini are competing in something.

Welcome to “This Week in Illini Athletics,” a weekly review of the past week of Illini sports and a preview of the week to come.

Football (3-1 Overall, 0-1 Big Ten)

Last Week: The first Thursday night game at Memorial Stadium proved to be a good one. Chase Brown did the usual with over 100 yards on the ground. Tommy DeVito did his part completing 24 passes for 332 yards with 3 touchdowns. The Illini also got a breakout game from Pat Bryant who finished with 7 receptions for 115 yards and a TD. The defense was able to take it from there, as they shutout the Mocs.

Final: Chattanooga 0 - Illinois 31

Recap Here:

This Week: The Illini will continue their Big Ten schedule with a massive matchup against Wisconsin at Camp Randall. If the Illini want to prove that they are a serious force in the West, this is the game to get the people talking.

Illini Football at Wisconsin. Saturday 1st, 11 A.M.

Women’s Soccer (6-4-1 Overall, 1-2 Big Ten)

Last Week: Soccer went up against two B1G foes in Maryland and Penn State. Maryland before this match as been struggling as of late, posting a record of 2-1-5 overall, 1-1 in the B1G. Penn State on the other hand is having an excellent season, as they are currently ranked 17th in the nation.

  • vs. Maryland - So... when I say the Terps got out to a fast start, I mean first 14 seconds fast. The Illini blinked and their were down a score (sorry but I had to show the highlight). The Illini then lived on Maryland’s side of the field, but could not find the net to show for it. It wasn’t until the 56th minute of the 2nd half that the Illini found their answer in Sydney Stephens. Ten minutes later, boom, the Illini had the lead after Ella Karolack connected on a good ball. Illinois would not settle however, as they added an insurance goal in the 71st minute. Maryland was able to answer, but was not able to overcome the Illini.

Final: Maryland 2 - Illinois 3

  • vs. #17 Penn State - Illinois knew coming into this matchup that this would have to be a gritty affair for them to have a chance. Sadly, the Illini caught a case of deja ‘vu after Penn State scored 30 seconds into the match. Not how you want to start a match against a top-rated program. The Illini were now sitting on their heels playing very defensive and the Lions took notice. Penn State would go onto make 3 goals on 11 shots, compared to Illinois 1 lonely shot in the 1st half. There was little to no difference in the 2nd half has Penn State added 2 goals to their lead and Illinois was left blanked.

Final: Illinois 0 - Penn State 5

This Week: The soccer team will be hosting B1G opponents Iowa and in-state rival Northwestern.

Volleyball (7-5 Overall, 2-0 Big Ten)

Last Week: The volleyball team got a wake up call after they were stripped of their top 25 ranking, after a very rough previous week. Illinois was looking for a bounce back week, while opening up B1G play.

  • vs. Maryland - The Terps are no squad to sleep on, and the Illini knew. Maryland up to this match was posting a 9-3 record against some very tough competition. The Illini saw that they must take the upper-hand quick, and they did. Illinois’ Kayla Burbage and company were able to mount an 11 point lead, which prevailed them to a set 1 victory. Set 2, was very tight all the way down the stretch, but once the Illini crawled within one (17-18) the Terps pulled away taking the set. With the match knotted up at one a piece the Illini were able take the advantage winning the set by 10. The deciding set was capped off by a impressive run by the Illini. Down 20 to 23, the Illini were able to go on a 5 point run to shock the Terps and take the match.

Set 1: Maryland 17 - Illinois 25

Set 2: Maryland 25 - Illinois 18

Set 3: Maryland 15 - Illinois 25

Set 4: Maryland 23 - Illinois 25

Final: Maryland 1 - Illinois 3

  • vs. Northwestern - This Northwestern squad is no joke. Before the match, the Wildcats held a record of 11-2, with one lose against B1G opponents. They also received 17 total votes to be ranked in the top 25 (Illinois received 5 votes). The first set was controlled by the Illini, but slowly their lead started to slip. With the score 20-15 in favor of the Illini, Northwestern was able to take 24-23 lead. Illinois stopped the bleeding and miraculously won the set. Illinois rolled with the momentum and took set 2 with ease. With the highly talented Northwestern against the wall, the Illini were able to take the set and bounce back with a massive sweep.

Set 1: Northwestern 24 - Illinois 26

Set 2: Northwestern 18 - Illinois 25

Set 3: Northwestern 20 - Illinois 25

Final: Northwestern 0 - Illinois 3

This Week: The Illini have the toughest part of the schedule this week as they will be going up against number #11 Purdue and #2 Wisconsin. If the Illini were able to pull a win from just one of these games they could certainly expect to be back in the top 25.

Women’s Golf

Last Week: The women’s golf team came to play last week, as they were able to finish 12th overall as of Sunday at the Oklahoma Schooner Classic. Illinois’ Crystal Wang shot -6 under par with a total score of 64 round one. She is currently tied for third at the end of day 2. Isabel Sy is having a very impressive showing shooting -6 under par, shooting a score of 67 both days. She is currently sitting on the podium at 2nd place. They will finish up the Schooner Classic later today.

This Week: After they finish up in Oklahoma, they will take a much-needed week off.

#8 Men’s Golf

This Week: After a week off that featured them moving up in the rankings, men’s golf returns this week. They will be traveling up to Michigan State to attend the Folds of Honor Collegiate.

Women’s Tennis

Last Week: Illinois women’s tennis hosted UTR College Circuit last week in Champaign. The Illini were able to walk away with a total of 26 combined wins over two days of competition. In doubles the Illini posted a 5-4 record, while in singles the Illini were able to rack up an impressive record of 21-4.

This Week: Illinois will be splitting up as they will send part of the squad to the University of Alabama while Kate Duonge and Ashley Yeah will attend the ITA Women’s All-American Championships in North Carolina.

Men’s Tennis

Last Week: The boys attend the Commodore Invite down in Nashville, Tennessee last week. The Illini were headlined by grad-student Nic Meister, freshman Kenta Miyoshi and Mathis Debru as the orange and blue were able pick up 7 wins over the course of three days.

This Week: Men’s tennis will head up to East Lancing to compete at Michigan States’ Drobec/Beeman invite and those selected will compete at the ITA All American Championships

Cross Country

This Week: After a nice week off, both Men’s and Women’s cross country teams will compete at the Gans Creek Classic in Columbia, Missouri at the University of Missouri on Friday.

Softball (Fall Ball: 4-0 Overall)

Last Week: The softball team started their fall circuit sweeping the weekend!

  • Illinois 16 - Lakeland 3
  • Illinois 5 - Wabash Valley 3
  • Illinois 7 - UIC 2
  • Illinois 1 - Parkland 0

This Week: Illinois will be on the road as they have a doubleheader against Illinois Wesleyan on Saturday. Then they will go onto host Loyola Chicago and Danville at home on Sunday.

Baseball (Fall Ball: 1-0 Overall)

Last Week: The orange and blue start off their Fall with a win under their belt.

  • Illinois 10 - UIS 4

This Week: Illinois will be facing off against the Great Lake Canadians and Indiana State Sycamores this week.

Women’s Swimming

This Week: The Illini women’s swimming team will be starting their season this week, starting with the annual Orange vs. Blue meet.