Badgers ring in new year with Big Ten victory - WKOW 27: Madison, WI Breaking News, Weather and Sports

Badgers ring in new year with Big Ten victory

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MADISON, Wis. (UW Athletics, Sarah Woodward) – The Wisconsin women’s basketball team ended 2015 in style, clinching its Big Ten Conference opener on New Year’s Eve with a 73-69 decision over Indiana.

The Thursday afternoon game started out a little rocky with an unannounced Kohl Center evacuation, but not even a false fire drill could upend the Badgers as they opened the conference season 1-0 for the second straight year.

Wisconsin (5-6, 1-0 Big Ten) led by as many as 10 points in the game, including at 62-52 with 5:45 to play before the Hoosiers rallied to close the gap. A 10-2 Indiana run cut UW’s lead to 64-52 with 2:16 to play but two key offensive rebounds set up a Nicole Bauman 3-pointer with 53 seconds remaining to put the Badgers up 57-52.

Indiana would get no closer than four points (70-66) the rest of the game as Wisconsin went 6-of-8 from the line to seal the win.  

Bauman shone bright in the final period, as the senior tallied 12 of her game-high 24 points in the fourth quarter.  The senior guard was 6-for-6 from the free throw line, including 4-of-4 in the fourth quarter, shooting 100 percent for the sixth time in her career. She added six rebounds and grabbed three steals.

Joining Bauman in double-digits was fellow senior Dakota Whyte with 17 points and sophomore Cayla McMorris, who notched 12 points.

Wisconsin shot 48.1 percent (26-of-54) from field-goal range, compared to Indiana’s 45.6 percent (26-of-57). The Badgers also led the Hoosiers from the 3-point range as they shot 41.7percent (5-of-12) compared to the Hoosiers’ 33.3 percent (4-of-12) from behind the arc. UW also outshot the Big Ten’s best free-throw shooting team 69.6 percent (16-of-23) to 61.9 percent (13-of-21) from the line.

UW also turned the ball over only nine times while dishing off 10 assists. IU had 16 turnovers and 12 assists. Wisconsin also outblocked the Hoosiers 5-1.

The Badgers hit the road and return to action on Sunday in East Lansing, as they take on No. 24 Michigan State in a 1 p.m. CT game.

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