CHAMPAIGN (WCIA) — In front of a crowd of almost 5,000, Illinois (13-2, 3-1) played toe-to-toe with No. 12 Iowa (11-4, 3-1) before coming away with the upset win 90-86, Illinois’ first win against a ranked opponent since 2019.
Genesis Bryant had a career-high 24 points in the win, while Kendall Bostic was a perfect 7-for-7 from the field. Reigning Big Ten Player of the Year Caitlin Clark got hers with 32 points, but fouled out late in the fourth.
“It makes a huge difference. There’s no way we win that game, and I really believe this, if that crowd wasn’t into the game like they were,” head coach Shauna Green said. “It feeds, it fuels our team. It’s hard on the opposing team.”
“Having that many people come out to one of our games,” Bostic said. “We haven’t had that, since the kid’s game, but like last year we didn’t have that. Just being able to feed off them and see all those people there for us, it was really, really cool to see and it was fun to play in and it made the game that much better.”
Illinois will wait and see if it will be ranked for the first time since 2000 with the win. They now set their sights to a home date with Northwestern on Thursday, Jan. 5 at 8 p.m.