Women's Basketball Falls To Chicago Challengers In Exhibition Finale|
Nov. 14, 2002
Chicago, Ill. - The Chicago Challengers outscored the University of Illinois at Chicago women's basketball team 16-3 over the final 5:47 of the game to hand the Flames a 75-65 loss in their final exhibition game of the season at the UIC Pavilion on Thursday night.
Chicago's Stacy Carney, who scored seven points during that run, scored a team-high 19 points for the Challengers. The Challengers also received solid performances from Mfon Udoka (15 points, 11 rebounds), Kris Rastrelli (13 points) and Marilyn Bishop (12 points).
UIC head coach Lisa Ryckbosch knew that her squad was in for a fight, but knew that the matchup would better prepare the Flames for their season-opener against the Northwestern Wildcats on November 22nd.
"There's no doubt that we were excited about the opportunity to play them because it really mimics what we need to do in order to play Northwestern," Ryckbosch said. "There are kids over there that have played in the WNBA, two or three of them have played in the Final Four.
"I was very pleased with the way we came out and competed," Ryckbosch continued. "My biggest concern was how we were going to compete against that level because they were bigger than us."
UIC was not concerned with the Challengers' height advantage as the Flames out-rebounded their opponents, 50-39, including 24 offensive rebounds. Senior center Zsuzsa Tarnai (Budapest, Hungary/Casper CC) recorded a double-double of 15 points and 11 boards to pace the Flames.
Senior guard LeKesha Williams (Oklahoma City, Okla./Midwest City) led the Flames in scoring for the second-straight game with a game-high 25 points on 10-of-21 shooting, including a pair of treys.
"There were some very bright spots out there and some things that have me excited," Ryckbosch said. "There are also some things like being tied at 62 with 5:36 and finishing with 65 points."
UIC will open up the 2002-03 campaign on Friday, November 22nd as they will travel to Evanston, Illinois to take on the Northwestern Wildcats at 5:00 p.m.