Women's Basketball

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After the Wolverines (14-7 overall, 5-5 Big Ten) shot 75 percent from the floor in the first quarter and led by as much as 12, poor second quarter shooting allowed No. 18 Iowa (18-4, 9-2) to cut the lead to six with five minutes left in the first half. Sophomore forward Naz Hillmon was the only Michigan player to make a shot in the quarter — scoring all six of the team’s second quarter points to that point.

Following a slow start, sophomore guard Amy Dilk stepped up for the Wolverines against No. 23 Northwestern, but it was too little, too late.

Down nine midway through the second quarter, and with sloppy play preventing any sort of rhythm, the Michigan women’s basketball team needed a spark.
Amy Dilk had been at the forefront of the Wolverines’ ugly first quarter. After turning the ball over twice in the first two minutes of the game, it looked like it might be a lost night for the sophomore guard. But rather than letting her work out the kinks on the court, Michigan coach Kim Barnes Arico took her out four minutes into the game and talked to her. And the message resonated.

Sophomore forward Naz Hillmon and the Michigan women’s basketball team fought back throughout, but ultimately lost, 81-73, to No. 23 Northwestern on Thursday night.

The Michigan women’s basketball team found itself in the hole for most of the game Thursday night, behind Northwestern by five or six points. At times, it poked its head up and reminded the Wildcats it was there, but they always had an answer — a big three or a quick layup — and in the end, it didn’t matter. Northwestern (18-3 overall, 8-2 Big Ten) kept itself ahead of the Wolverines (13-7, 4-5), winning, 81-73.

Michigan coach Kim Barnes Arico faces a tough task in Northwestern.

Throughout the season, the Michigan women’s basketball team has been plagued by one issue: turnovers. Last Sunday, against Rutgers, it survived the first half unscathed, taking care of the ball and instead forcing the Scarlet Knights into turnovers.

Senior guard Akienreh Johnson has had to step up on and off the court, especially since senior forward Kayla Robbins is out with a torn ACL.

On Sunday, the Michigan women’s basketball team desperately needed a win against Rutgers to get its season back on track. Putting up a career-high 24 points and 11 rebounds, senior guard Akienreh Johnson stepped up with her first career double-double to help the Wolverines win, 71-57.

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Senior forward Kayla Robbins’ injury has left an opening for Izabel Varejão to step up. In Sunday’s game against Rutgers, she emerged as an offensive and defensive threat in a three-big lineup.

Senior guard Akienreh Johnson scored a career-high 24 points with 11 rebounds Sunday against Rutgers.

When senior forward Kayla Robbins went down with a season-ending ACL injury last week, it was clear who the Michigan women’s basketball team needed to step up — Akienreh Johnson.

Sophomore forward Naz Hillmon notched a double-double in the Wolverines' 71-57 win over Rutgers on Sunday.

The Michigan women’s basketball team (13-6 overall, 4-4 Big Ten) had lost three of its last four contests, and Sunday was its first full game without senior forward Kayla Robbins, who tore her ACL a week prior. Even more, it was going up against a Rutgers team (15-4, 5-3) that sat just outside the top 25.
Yet the Wolverines seemed unfazed — even without Robbins. They hit tough shots. They forced turnovers. And they dealt the Scarlet Knights their fourth loss, burying them, 71-57.

Presented by The Michigan Daily’s sports section, a rotating cast of writers discusses Michigan sports.

Following the Michigan women’s basketball team’s three losses in its last four games, senior sports editor Ben Katz sits down with beat writers Jack Kingsley, Kent Schwartz and Brendan Roose to discuss what’s going wrong with the Wolverines.

Senior guard Akienreh Johnson said Michigan needs to tweak its defensive gameplan.

The Wolverines’ inability to defend the three has been central to their struggles recently. They’ve lost three of their last four games, and with three of the Big Ten’s top teams — Rutgers, Northwestern and Iowa — up next on the schedule, they desperately need to resolve this problem to bounce back.
If it was only one game, you could say that Michigan was just unlucky, but poor 3-point defense has become a theme over its last several losses. And with senior forward Kayla Robbins — one of the Wolverines’ best defenders — out for the season with a torn ACL, life will only get harder if Michigan can’t adjust.