1993 Iowa women’s basketball team cheers on this year’s squad
CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (KCRG) - It’s been thirty years, but the Iowa Hawkeyes women’s basketball team will once again be part of the Final Four showdown in the NCAA tournament.
TV9 spoke to four women who were on the roster that year. Their excitement for this team conjures their own history-making season, one that defied the doubters and taught them resilience.
“Listen, this is amazing, like, truly amazing,” said Necole Tunsil.
She’s watching the team, and hoping they go beyond what she and her teammates were able to achieve.
“It’s great that they made it to the final four. Iowa, we made it to the final four. But I really, really want to want them to do something more than what we did. I want them to do something special,” said Tunsil. “I want them to actually bring home some hardware.”
Tunsil and the others who were on that roster all know firsthand what it takes to compete at this level.
“I know how tired they are right now,” said Molly Tideback.
“Obviously, the spotlight is on you,” said Jenny Noll Furnas. “It’s just the big stage.”
The ‘93 team also faced adversity beyond what most teams will ever endure. Thanksgiving Day 1992, Bill Stringer, the husband of their coach Vivian Stringer, died suddenly of a heart attack.
Cathy Marx remembered Bill Stringer cheering her on during training. “I mean, he ran with me...in preseason like Cathy, come on, you gotta pick it up. My wife’s gonna be mad at me if you don’t.”
Marx’s own father died that season, along with teammate Virgie Dillingham’s father, and fellow student Chris Street, a forward on the men’s team.
“Every time we turned around, we were going to a funeral,” said Tideback.
“There was a lot of emotion just behind that season. So it almost amplified what we were playing for,” said Furnas.
The women from the ‘93 team are still friends.
“We just love on each other still,” said Tunsil. “That shows the sisterhood from Iowa just never goes away.”
And together, that sisterhood is cheering on the younger women, hoping the ‘23 team does better than they ever did.
I’m so proud of them. I don’t mean anything to them. But they just know that there is a whole whole group of ladies that have come before that are so proud of them. And we’re rooting for them,” said Marx.
“I just I think it’s our time,” said Tunsil.
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