Badgers women's basketball team edged by UIC at UW Field House
MADISON, Wis. – UIC brought a seven-game winning streak into the UW Field House and took home its eighth consecutive victory with a 58-56 win over the Wisconsin women's basketball team Saturday night.
UIC (8-2) hasn't lost a game since a 79-63 loss at Northwestern on Nov. 10.
After posting its lowest first half point total of the season (24), Wisconsin (6-5) came out of the break and made a game of it, outscoring the Flames 32-28 in the second half, but couldn't come up with the win.
The Badgers fought until the bitter end, but missed shots ultimately were the Badgers' undoing.
"I don't expect this team to quit, but the name of the game is you have to make buckets when you need them," said head coach Bobbie Kelsey after the game. "We didn't do that and they did, credit them. They hit some big free throws, hit some big shots. It was a well-fought game we just came out on the low end of it."
Every time the Badgers tied the game, the Flames answered back. A pair of free throws by Morgan Paige knotted the game 42-42 with 11:09 remaining, but a layup by Terri Bender 18 seconds later gave UIC back the lead.
A 3-pointer by Taylor Wurtz at the 8:34 mark tied the game 45-45, but a jumper by Rachel Story gave the Flames back the lead a minute later.
A Wurtz layup with 5:31 to go tied the game 50-50, but Story was there again, this time with a layup, to stop the Badgers momentum and give the Flames a 52-50 lead.
A pair of free throws by Paige tied the game 52-52 with 2:46 to go, but Story was there again with a layup to give UIC back the lead.
Jacki Gulczynski tied the game, 54-54, with a layup and then gave the Badgers a 56-54 lead with a pair of free throws with 46 seconds remaining, but a 3-pointer by Story put the Flames up 57-56 with 20 seconds to go.
Story's 3-pointer took the wind out of the Badgers' sails.
"I should have made a little bit of an adjustment in the zone," reflected Kelsey. "We had been doing it the whole game one way and I didn't tell Taylor (Wurtz) to stay on that side. That was my fault. She did exactly what she was supposed to do, but you hope they recognize it even if I don't tell them, but again, that's on coach, not on her.
"(Story) was left open and shouldn't have been. She was the best player on the floor, we shouldn't have left her open."
Story finished the game with a free throw to give the Flames the 58-56 win.
A native of Milwaukee, Story finished the night with a game-high 25 points and no other UIC player scored in double-figures.
Michala Johnson finished the night with 17 points and 10 rebounds, marking her fourth double-double of the season. Wurtz and Paige each chipped in 13 points.
Wisconsin shot 40.8 percent (20-of-49) from the floor, marking a season-low field goal attempts. The Badgers were 4-of-15 (26.7 percent) from 3-point range and 12-of-18 (66.7 percent) from the line.
UIC shot 39.1 percent (25-of-64), going 5-of-14 (35.7 percent) from beyond the arc. The Flames were 3-of-7 (42.9 percent) from the charity stripe.
UIC outrebounded Wisconsin, 43-33, scoring 12 second chance points on 15 offensive boards.
The Badgers wrap up non-conference play on Monday, Dec. 30 when they host Green Bay at the Kohl Center in a 6 p.m. contest. The game will air live on BTN.
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