Lauren Taylor | Echo
Last weekend, Taylor's women's basketball team traveled to Illinois to face two top-five nationally ranked teams.
The team currently stands with a record of 2-4, after facing numerous tough opponents so far this season.
"I think that our difficult non-conference schedule is preparing us for a successful conference journey," said senior Cassidy Wyse.
On Saturday, the Trojans faced No. 2 Saint Xavier. Although the game started off rough with a 14-point deficit in the first half, the team came back strong, bringing it to a two-point game.
Despite their efforts, the Trojans fell short, losing the game 69-63.
Junior Kendall Bradbury had an outstanding performance, acquiring a double-double with 25 points and 16 rebounds. Wyse finished just shy of a double-double with 10 points and 9 rebounds.
"Although we lost, I was encouraged because we didn't play the best we could have and we still competed with the second ranked team in the nation," senior Josie Cobb said.
The team continued to stand with confidence as they approached their game on Monday against No. 5 Saint Francis.
The Trojans kept the game close throughout the first half, only down by three points at halftime. When the third quarter came around, they came out stronger than ever, outscoring Saint Francis 20-9.
Wyse said the third quarter lead was courtesy of several big shots and key stops on defense.
In the beginning of the fourth quarter, the Trojans held a 10-point lead. However, Saint Francis came back in the end, defeating them 63-58.
"I think that we will learn from the mistakes that we made this weekend and use the experience against two good teams later on in conference play," Wyse said.
Although the losses were tough, Head coach Jody Martinez said he feels the team is heading in the right direction. He also shared he loves the team and their passion to compete.
The Trojans will be traveling yet again this weekend to attend the Zweifel Pritchett Tournament at Asbury University in Wilmore, Kentucky.
"We have had a couple of tough losses, but I think we are growing and getting closer to where we want to be," Cobb said. "The team is all in, and we want to continue to get better every game."
Martinez shared they are approaching the tournament this weekend with two simple goals in mind: to compete and to improve.
The Trojans will play tonight at Asbury, tipping off at 6 p.m.
"Photograph by Brad Timmerman"