Jan. 9, 2015
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IOWA CITY, Iowa — When playing in the nation’s best conference, there is little time to celebrate a win or dwell on a loss, so the University of Iowa women’s basketball team has shifted its focus to Purdue.
“We face another good team in Purdue on Sunday,” said UI head coach Lisa Bluder during a news conference Friday at Carver-Hawkeye Arena. “They won at Illinois. We know we have our hands full facing Purdue.”
The 17th-ranked Hawkeyes are 11-3 overall and 2-1 in Big Ten play following a 73-61 loss at Illinois on Thursday night. The Boilermakers sit at 9-6 and 2-2 following an 88-64 loss at Maryland on Thursday.
“The great thing about league play is there are lots of games to play,” said senior Melissa Dixon. “We have a quick turnaround on Sunday, and we can bounce back fast. We are excited to learn from this loss and get back to work.”
Both teams will be hungry for a victory when they meet on Mediacom Court on Sunday at 1 p.m. (CT).
“We have to hold on to that game and use it as motivation, but we have to focus on Purdue now,” said senior All-American Samantha Logic. “It is a lesson for all of us; every game in the Big Ten is big. You cannot just expect to show up and win.
“We need that sense of urgency in every practice, win or lose. I do not see having to lose in order to be motivated, but if that is what it takes right now, we will use it and learn from it.”
Iowa’s loss Thursday night ended a five-game winning streak, which was highlighted by Dixon’s hot shooting.
“The stats show you she is the best 3-point shooter in the country,” said Logic. “Shooting at a high percentage as well, nearly 50%, that is unbelievable. She opens up our offense, and is so valuable to our team.”
Dixon has converted 29 3-pointers over the last four games, and moved into fifth place in Big Ten history.
“She has always been a really good 3-point shooter,” said Bluder. “She is confident and is on a roll right now. Her teammates are smart enough to look for her in those opportunities.”
“Every game, I build more confidence,” said Dixon. “My teammates always do a good job finding me, and that is part of Iowa basketball… being unselfish.”
Sunday’s contest is `Pack the House!’, Whiteout, Dollar Dog, and Girl Scout Day at Carver-Hawkeye Arena. The first 1,000 fans will receive a free rally towel.