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Northwestern women’s basketball update: Losses to Syracuse and Milwaukee extend losing streak

The Wildcats are on a three-game losing streak.

NCAA Womens Basketball: Big Ten Conference Tournament Maryland v Northwestern Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

It’s been a tough week for Northwestern (5-4) women’s basketball. After going 1-2 at the Music City Challenge, the Wildcats have dropped their next two games and are now on a three-game losing streak.

The Wildcats first made a trip to the Carrier Dome to face Syracuse. Freshman Lindsay Pulliam had 29 points on the road in her ninth career game, but fourth quarter defensive issues doomed the Wildcats to a seven-point loss to an undefeated Syracuse team. Lindsay Pulliam already looks like a special player, but she’s going to need some help if Northwestern women’s basketball wants to win more games.

Northwestern found no respite back in Evanston in its next game. UW-Milwaukee (5-2) traveled to Beardsley Gym and earned a convincing 66-57 road win over Northwestern. Despite 15 points from Abi Scheid, Northwestern once again struggled in the fourth quarter. The Panthers outscored Northwestern 22-15 in the fourth and pulled away for the nine-point win. The free throw disparity was heavily in favor of Milwaukee (26-9), and Northwestern could not find the firepower to recover.

Northwestern hasn’t played badly in its last three losses, but a promising 5-1 non-conference start has evaporated. If Northwestern had won its last three games, it would have some momentum and a decent résumé heading into conference play. Instead, Northwestern is now 5-4 and in dire need of wins against Stony Brook and DePaul.

There’s certainly a lot of potential as Pallas Kunaiyi-Akpanah has improved dramatically on offense and Pulliam is clearly a special talent. However, Northwestern doesn’t have the depth to compete for 40 minutes right now, especially with Amber Jamison out for the season.

Northwestern’s next game is against Stony Brook at 12 p.m. on December 10.