Coming off its first loss of the season -- a 70-59 defeat to Illinois -- the Georgia Lady Dogs women's basketball team is set to open a grueling 16-game SEC schedule that features multiple contests against nationally-ranked opponents.
The No. 10 Lady Dogs won their first 12 games of the season before being upset by Illinois on Dec. 28. With that loss still fresh in their minds, players are ready to bounce back with a win in Thursday's SEC opener against Missouri (11-3).
"SEC season has gotten here pretty fast, but it's time to go right now," guard Khaalidah Miller told the Athens Banner-Herald. "I didn't expect us to lose to Illinois. I think we just weren't prepared going into that game like we have been in the past. We've got to learn from it, treat it as a learning experience and try to get ready for SEC."
After playing just four major conference opponents in its first 12 games -- Illinois, Rutgers, Georgia Tech and TCU -- SEC play signals a significant jump in competition for Georgia. The league boasts six teams in the top-25.
Georgia, which is 25-5 in conference openers, hosts Missouri on Thursday at 7 p.m. inside the Stegeman Coliseum.