The Loyola women’s basketball team will face off in its first game of 2018 Nov. 3, according to the team’s newly announced non-conference schedule. It features four different teams that were 2018 postseason qualifiers. Head coach Kate Achter said in a statement she wanted the competitiveness of the team to grow, so they upped their non-conference schedule.
North Central College (Exhibition) — Nov. 3
The Ramblers play the Cardinals Nov. 3 in Gentile Arena. In the 2017-18 season, North Central College had a 5-20 record. This year, former Rambler Maggie McCloskey-Bax who graduated in 2010, will take over as head coach. Last year’s roster was highlighted by senior guard Mayson Whipple who averaged 11.5 points per game. The Cardinals are set to return 14 of their 16 players for the 2018-19 season.
Youngstown State University — Nov. 9
Youngstown State is returning 13 of its 16 players for the 2018-19 season. The Penguins also added four new players to complete their roster. The team boasted a 16-16 record last year and were led by redshirt junior forward Sarah Cash, who averaged 11.6 points per game and 4.5 rebounds per game. The team finished fifth in its conference and advanced to the Women’s Basketball Invitation (WBI) where they lost in the first round. Loyola and Youngstown State were Horizon League rivals from 1979-2013. The Ramblers take on the Penguins Nov. 9 in Ohio.
University of Detroit Mercy — Nov. 12
The Ramblers home opener is scheduled for Nov. 12 against Detroit Mercy. In the 2017-18 season, Detroit Mercy went 2-28. They finished ninth in the Horizon League. Two players — Brianne Cohen and Anja Marinkovich averaged double-digit points per game. The team added five new players to the roster.
University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC) — Nov. 17
Loyola will head to the West Loop to take on city rival UIC Nov. 17. The Flames went 8-22 last season and were led by junior guard Brittany Byrd’s 4.8 points per game. They finished last in the Horizon League. Like Loyola, UIC’s roster consists of mostly sophomores, but they added two first-years this season. Last year the Ramblers beat the Flames 57-55.
Bowling Green State University — Nov. 20
Achter takes the Ramblers to her alma mater, Bowling Green, Nov. 20. During the 2017-18 season, the Falcons went 11-19. Their season was highlighted by wins against Valparaiso University and Xavier University. They finished fifth in the Mid-American Conference. The team is returning 13 of its 15 players and adding two first-years to the roster.
Chicago State University —Nov. 26
Chicago State went 1-29 last season, with their lone win against Utah Valley University. Loyola defeated the Cougars 46-28 last season. They finished last in the Western Athletic Conference. Chicago State is returning six players and welcoming six newcomers to finish out their roster. The Ramblers take on the Cougars Nov. 26 at home.
Purdue University Fort Wayne (PFW) — Nov. 29
Loyola takes on PFW at home Nov. 29. PFW is returning 12 of its 13 players from the 2017-28 season. The Mastodons finished with a 4-24 record highlighted by wins against Quincy University and Loyola. They finished last in the Summit League. The Ramblers fell to the Mastodons 79-70 last season. PFW was led by Jaelencia Williams, who averaged 8.2 points per game and 4.9 rebounds per game.
Western Michigan University — Dec. 3
The Ramblers head to Kalamazoo, Michigan to take on Western Michigan Dec. 3. Western Michigan finished with a 18-15 record last season, with notable wins against Kent State University and Ball State University. They finished third in the Mid-American Conference. The Broncos were led by Briannah Mobley’s 16.3 points per game and Deja Wimby’s 11.5 points per game last season. The team will return 12 of 17 players to the roster.
Southern Illinois University Edwardsville (SIUE) — Dec. 6
The Cougars went 17-15 in the 2017-18, with notable wins coming against Murray State University, St. Louis University and SIU-Carbondale. They placed third in the Ohio Valley Conference and went on to compete in the WBI. SIUE returns 10 of its 15 players, but lost Lauren White’s 13.7 points per game and Donshel Beck’s 13.0 points per game. The Ramblers take on the Cougars Dec. 6 at home.
Purdue University — Dec. 9
Loyola takes on Purdue Dec. 9 on the road. Purdue is the only Big 10 team the Ramblers will face this season. The Boilermakers went 20-14 last year, with notable wins against Ball State University and the University of Iowa. They finished seventh in their conference and advanced to Women’s National Invitation Tournament. The roster featured five players averaging double-digit points per game, three of which return this season.
University of Missouri, Kansas City (UMKC) — Dec. 16
Loyola takes on UMKC Dec. 16 in Gentile. UMKC went 11-19 overall in its 2017-18 season finishing fifth the in the Western Athletic Conference. The Kangaroos’ roster features three players averaging in double-digit points per game. They will be returning five of their 12 players and adding seven first-years to complete the roster.
DePaul University — Dec. 20
The Ramblers plan a rematch against DePaul after an 88-47 loss in the 2017-18 season in Gentile Dec 20. The Blue Demons had a 28-4 record last season, highlighted by five players averaging double-digit points per game. They’ll be returning 11 of their 14 players, including their top five leading scorers. The Blue Demons finished first in the Big East Conference and played in the NCAA tournament.