UW women win season opener against UW-Milwaukee - WQOW TV: Eau Claire, WI NEWS18 News, Weather, and Sports

UW women win season opener against UW-Milwaukee

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MADISON, Wis. -- A second-half change in defense led a charge on offense as the Wisconsin women's basketball team ran away with a 74-56 victory over Milwaukee Sunday night at the Kohl Center.
 
Leading 37-33 at the break, Wisconsin (1-0) returned from halftime and scored seven straight points, taking a 44-33 lead with 18:12 to play.
 
It was pressuring Milwaukee (1-1) on defense that made the difference for UW. 
 
"When you have a team that is not great ball handlers, you have to make them dribble and do something they're not comfortable with," head coach Bobbie Kelsey commented. "They're comfortable with shooting and so we just stood there (in the first half).
 
"We got up a little bit on them and made them create off the dribble, that's not really their game plan."
 
The Badgers kept up their defense, forcing eight Milwaukee turnovers until their lead had grown to 17 (64-47) with 6:44 remaining in the game.
 
A layup by Morgan Paige at the 3:20 mark extended UW's lead to 70-50 and a layup by Dakota Whyte with 1:16 remaining put the Badgers up by 22 (74-52), their largest lead of the game.
 
In total, Wisconsin forced 16 Milwaukee turnovers in the second half.
 
Wisconsin got off to a slow start, sputtering through seven lead changes in the first half before finally taking the lead for good at 33-31 on a jumper by AnnMarie Brown with 3:25 remaining in the half.
 
Brown finished the game with career highs of 11 points and 10 rebounds for her first career double-double.
 
It was a performance that didn't surprise Kelsey.
 
"Because (Brown) put in the work to do this and I'm not surprised. It is nice to see her do this because I knew she could.
 
"Others need to follow her lead and get on her page," Kelsey continued. "She's certainly put in her work and I'm more happy for her than she'll ever know."
 
Brown was joined in double figures by three other Badgers, Taylor Wurtz led the Badgers with 16 (7-of-16), Paige chipped in 14 (6-of-16) and freshman Nicole Bauman added 10 (3-of-6) in her Badger debut.
 
Tiera Stephen's eight steals and eight points added to the Badgers' success. In all, 10 Badgers netted points against Milwaukee.
 
The Badgers shot 43.2 percent (16-of-37) in the first half, including a 3-for-9 performance (33.3 percent) from 3-point range, and a 40 percent (2-of-5) performance from the line.
 
Wisconsin finished the night 30-of-69 (43.5 percent) from field goal range and just 4-of-19 (21.1 percent) from beyond the arc. The Badgers were 10-of-18 (55.6 percent) from the stripe.
 
Milwaukee won the battle of the free throws, finishing the night 7-of-8 (87.5 percent). The Panthers were 21-of-52 (40.4 percent) from the floor and 7-of-15 (46.7 percent) from 3-point range.
 
UW outrebounded Milwaukee, 44-22, and finished with just 12 turnovers compared to the Panther's 23.
 
Wisconsin takes to the road for a pair of games, visiting Gonzaga on Friday before traveling to Washington State on Nov. 18.
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