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Red-hot Bulldogs return home to face WSU

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Story by Ashley Beall

Photo by Joel Venzke

wbball1_joel-w2000-h2000The Drake women’s basketball team is on fire. After defeating Southern Illinois this past weekend 80-55, the Bulldogs have four straight wins under their belt.

Junior Kyndal Clark has been leading the way for the Bulldogs,  scoring 29 points against the Salukis.

Clark hopes to continue that streak when facing Wichita State tomorrow night at Knapp Center at 7:05 p.m.

“The fact that we are on a four-game winning streak and sweeping two teams on the road, that’s huge,” Clark said. “That’s the first time I’ve done that in my career, so it’s pretty awesome.”

The Bulldogs are currently 5-6 in the Missouri Valley Conference, while Wichita State is leading in conference play 11-0.

Junior Alex Harden has been the key player for the Shockers, averaging 16 points a game, and sophomore Jamillah Bonner has been averaging 13 points a game.

The last time the Bulldogs faced the Shockers they lost by a devastating 33 points, 88-55.

The Shockers were able to hold Clark to nine points, and freshman Lizzy Wendell added 10 points for the Bulldogs before fouling out.

Freshmen Caitlin Ingle also scored 13 points. With that loss behind them and the Bulldogs on their current winning streak, they need to continue building up that confidence.

“We’ve just been playing our game, and we’re doing that individually but we’re also able to put that all together,” Clark said.

“We’ve talked a lot about ‘bring the best you.’ Don’t worry about anybody else because you have to bring the best you first, and then we can put all those pieces together, and I think that’s really helped us in the last couple games because that’s what we need. We need to break things down, focus on ourselves and put all the pieces together.”

For the Bulldogs to win, the freshmen are going to have to continue to step up their games as they have in the past four games.

Throughout the season, Wendell and Ingle have continued to show their growth and have been a crucial point in the Bulldogs’ offense.

“We’ve been getting a lot of good experience, these last couple of games,” Clark said.

“We have gone to a zone, and we’ve gotten a lot more practice at that, and we’ve gotten to see a couple of different looks but you know Wichita can do it all. They want to get it inside the paint and score, and so, I think we’ve gotten great experience in our zone these past games, which I think will be a huge test to see how that matches up against Wichita.”

With an undefeated record and a huge win over the Bulldogs previously in the season, the Shockers are the favorite in this game.

However, that doesn’t deter the Bulldogs.

“We have nothing to lose, they’re undefeated in conference and we’re not expected to win but that’s the beauty of it,” Clark said.

“We get to go out there and just play hard and do the things that we know how to do and hope for the best. We have all week to prepare for this game and who cares about the last game, we’re focusing on this one.”

After Wichita State, the Bulldogs quickly turn around to host Missouri State in the “Hoops 4 Hope Game” on Sunday afternoon at 2:05 p.m.

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