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Redbird’s snap three game skid, pushing past the Ramblers of Loyola

Redbird’s snap three game skid, pushing past the Ramblers of Loyola

Illinois State was led by junior Katrina Beck who scored 15 points in the win. (Photo courtesy Nick Sadowski/WZND)

NORMAL –  Illinois State women’s basketball team defeated Loyola University Friday night 57-49 at Redbird Arena.

The Redbirds were led by junior Katrina Beck with 15 points. Rounding out the scoring was Megan Talbot, Hannah Green, Paige Saylor and Simone Goods all with 8 points.

ISU started strong going into the first half with a 30-19 lead before becoming a nail biter late 4th quarter. First-year coach Kristin Gillespie gave her candid thoughts after the win Friday night.

“I thought we did enough to win. It wasn’t pretty down the stretch but in the end, we will take a win anyway we can get,” said Gillespie.

The team struggled to score in the paint down low last week against Northern Iowa, but came through with 24 points down low against Loyola. Gillespie summarized the difference between the previous two outings.

“I just think we went back to the basics with our post this week in practice…posting with our lower body, making sure we knew what we were looking for within our offense,” said Gillespie.

The Redbirds saw a double digit lead in the second half fall to only two points before Beck turned on the afterburners. Beck fired off a personal 8-0 run by hitting two quick three point field goals right before adding a layup to finish her run.

Loyola fought back to bring the score within two a second time after two quick threes from the Ramblers Jessica Cerda. After splashing home the second three, Cerda went down with what looked like a leg injury and did not return.

With under a minute left, Beck then hit a clutch three pointer from the far baseline to seal the deal for ISU. Beck had been struggling from three point land of late, but found her groove Friday night on Doug Collins Court. Beck was proud of her performance down the stretch.

“It definitely felt good, I just want to do anything to help the team win and once I started settling down and getting my offense going within the flow of everything, I just knocked down open shots,” said Beck.

The Redbirds next game is Sunday against Valparaiso at Redbird Arena before taking on conference leaders Southern Illinois and Missouri State the following week.

Nick Sadowski contributed to this story. 

Nick Sadowski

February 2nd, 2018

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