GLO GLAD TO BE BACK HOME, READY TO FACE DETROIT QUEENS
Get ready. The Wisconsin GLO are coming home.
After nearly a month since the team last stepped foot on the court inside the Menominee Arena Nation, the reigning GWBA champions will be back on their home floor Saturday night hosting the Detroit Queens.
That means something to this team and there is certainly an excitement to being back home.
“We think it is an advantage because we have the best facilities in the league and the organization has spent a lot of time creating a great environment,” head coach Lauren Busalacchi said. “We get to play in front of our family and friends who don’t get to see our players a ton, unless they travel overseas, so that’s special. We think there are things our players really appreciate about playing at home.”
Now in their second season, the GLO have never lost on their homecourt and will look to continue that as they enter Saturday’s game riding a three-game winning streak and are 5-1 overall on the year.
Although the team has gotten off to a strong start, Busalacchi believes the best is still yet to come with this group and the team continues to make strides with each game it plays.
“We do have some players who are really coming into their own. We’ve only played three weekends together and practiced a couple of times so the team is still figuring out things for sure,” Busalacchi said. “We think each weekend we get to figure out a little more about ourselves and each other and that’s what we have to do the next three weeks to get ready for the playoffs for sure.”
The GLO enter Saturday’s game off a successful road trip to Michigan where they recorded wins over the Detroit Dodgers (87-77) and the Flint Monarchs (85-63). It was the second of two road weekends for the team – after splitting a pair of games with the St. Louis Surge – with a holiday weekend of no games in between
Busalacchi said the team definitely faced adversity during the four road games but she liked the way the players responded to the ebb and flow of momentum at times.
“We’re proud of how we handled the past two road trips and some adversity along the way and how we have bounced back,” Busalacchi said. “We’re just excited for another opportunity to host a new team in this league and play against some great competition. Find out how much better we can get in a weekend.”
HANNAH’S HOT HAND: Hannah Whitish is no stranger to knocking down 3-pointers or putting up big points, but in her first five games with the Wisconsin GLO the former Barneveld standout had yet to cut loose.
That changed last Sunday when Whitish went 9-for-11 from 3-point range and finished with a team-high 27 points to spark the victory over the Flint Monarchs.
“We knew her capability as a scorer as well as a creator that has made her stand out so it was nice to see her come into her own confidence wise,” Busalacchi said. “She hit that first one and she just didn’t look back. It was fun to see her cut loose and the team was super excited for her.”
The nine 3-pointers is the most in a game in franchise history and tops the seven 3-pointers Jolene Anderson hit in a game earlier this season.
Busalacchi credits Whitish for her effort but acknowledged that the team also contributed – recognizing Whitish was hot and executing the offense to get her open.
“Hannah is such a cerebral player and she did a great job of reading the defense and finding her shots,” Busalacchi said. “Maybe just as important was that her teammates saw it as well and actually executed their part. They are all capable of having big nights and to be able to be unselfish and recognize this is our teammate’s time right now. It’s important for championship teams to be that way and aware and acknowledge each other that way.”
FRANCHISE’S FIRST LOSS: The first game of the four road contests led to something the Wisconsin GLO had never dealt with before – a loss.
After an undefeated championship campaign in its inaugural season of 2019 and two wins to open this year, the GLO dropped a hard-fought 88-81 decision to the St. Louis Surge in the first game of a weekend pair.
The team responded the following day to beat the Surge 103-82.
“After the first loss, we think we learned a ton about responding to adversity and things not going our way,” Busalacchi said. “We came out the next day and we rebounded better, we handled the ball better and we shot better which helped. We executed some of our offense and defensive systems better and were a little more focused and that was awesome to see. The responses after a big disappointment were a great learning opportunity for our team.”
One thing that Busalacchi believed helped the team is that the opportunity to bounce back came quickly.
Instead of having to dwell on a defeat for a week or more, the GLO got a chance to get back on the court about 24 hours after the loss and right their ship.
“That’s what (assistant coach Mark Busalacchi) told the team after the loss, that we’re fortunate we don’t have to sit with this for longer than 24 hours and we have an opportunity tomorrow to bounce back,” Lauren Busalacchi said. “That’s what sports is about and what life is about. Figuring out what you have inside you when things don’t go your way and then they followed suit. It made the six-hour trip home a little easier.”
UP NEXT: The GLO will now be at home for three consecutive weekends starting with Saturday’s matchup against the Detroit Queens. That game is slated to tip-off at 7 p.m. at the Menominee Nation Arena.
Wisconsin will then host the Chicago Breeze on Sunday at 3 p.m. The GLO beat the Breeze 115-35 earlier this season.