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Gophers women’s basketball losing streak grows

Minnesota’s conference struggles continued dropping three more Big Ten games in the last week.
Image by CJ Bonk
Forward Alanna Micheaux shoots during the game against Michigan on Sunday, Jan. 29.

Feb. 5 vs. Illinois
The Gophers hit the road to take on the Fighting Illini Sunday, Feb. 5 at the State Farm Center.

Illinois came out fighting in the first quarter with an early 14-6 lead over the Gophers. The Gophers responded, scoring 8 straight points as sophomore Alanna Micheaux tied the game at 14. Illinois ended the quarter with a three and a bucket in the paint to take a 19-14 lead into the second.

Both teams came into the second quarter looking to run away with a lead. With zero turnovers during the 10 minutes of play, the Gophers outscored the Illini by 5, while also holding Illinois to just 5-of-23 shooting from the field. Minnesota was able to tie the game at 35 at the half.

Illinois’ defense dominated the third quarter, holding Minnesota to 2-of-13 from the floor. and after hitting six 3-pointers in the opening half, held the Gophers to 0-for-4 from the three-point line. Minnesota was able to cut the lead to just 4 points, but Illinois closed strong again and took a 53-45 lead into the fourth.

Illinois’ Adalia Mckenzie opened the fourth quarter with a layup, pushing the Illini’s lead to 10. The Gophers weren’t done, as they battled to tie the game at 60. A 9-0 run for the Illini and a few late free throws allowed Illinois to take the win over Minnesota 69-62.

Micheaux led the Gophers as she secured her ninth double-double of the season, registering 24 points and 11 boards. Makira Cook led Illinois with 21 points.

Feb. 8 vs. Ohio State
Without stopping back home in Minneapolis, the Gophers headed to Columbus, Ohio, to take on the No. 13 ranked Buckeyes.

The Gophers opened the game with two free throws from Micheaux. Ohio State responded with 8 unanswered points and stepped on the gas, scoring 21 of the game’s first 25 points, but Minnesota was able to get the lead down to 23-10 after the first 10 minutes of play.

The Buckeyes had two 6-0 runs in the second quarter. Mara Braun shined for the Gophers with a pair of 3-pointers and finished with 12 first-half points. The Buckeyes had the upper hand at the half after a 29-point second quarter, putting them ahead 52-33

Ohio State kept their foot on the gas with 28 points in the third quarter while only allowing 14 points from Minnesota. The Gophers closed the matchup by out scoring the Buckeyes 16-13 in the final quarter, but the final push would not be enough, as the Buckeyes went on to win 96-63.

As a team, Minnesota shot 23-of-57 from the floor and was led by Braun with 19 points, hitting three triples for the third game in a row. Ohio State was led by freshman Cotie McMahon.

The Gophers finished the week with a 76-70 overtime loss against their border rivals from Wisconsin, bringing their losing streak up to six.

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