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Badgers protect home court with 75-55 win over Northwestern



Jan. 22, 2012

Wisconsin 75, Northwestern 55
Kohl Center • Madison, Wis.

1st 2nd Final
 Northwestern (12-8, 2-5) 24 31 55
 Wisconsin (6-13, 2-5) 41 34 75
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• Attendance: 8,585
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 Statistical Leaders
 • Anya Covington: 23 Pts, 12 Reb, 4 Ast
 • Morgan Paige: 20 Pts, six 3-pointers
 • Taylor Wurtz: 15 Pts, 9 Reb, 4 Ast
 Stats at a Glance
 FG Percentage .311 .459
 3-Point FG Percentage .136 .407
 FT Percentage .583 .667
 Offensive Rebounds 9 8
 Defensive Rebounds 28 35
 Total Rebounds 37 43
 Turnovers 11 16
 Assists 12 17
 Steals 10 5
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MADISON, Wis. -- It all came together for the Wisconsin women's basketball team Sunday afternoon as it put up a season-high 75 points to defeat Northwestern, 75-55, in front of 8,585 fans at the Kohl Center. Anya Covington's career-high 23 points and 12 rebounds paced the Badgers.

 Fast Facts
• Badgers score season-high 75 points
• Covington scores career-high 23 points
• UW wins first Big Ten home game

A slow start turned into an offensive showcase when Covington put Wisconsin (6-13 overall, 2-5 Big Ten) on the scoreboard with the Badgers' first bucket at 17:14. Covington scored again, giving UW the lead, 4-3, with a jumper at 15:41 and the Badgers never looked back.

Morgan Paige followed up a layup with her first 3-pointer of the night with 15:20 to go, putting UW up 9-3. Wisconsin's offense surged ahead to a 12-point lead (17-5) with just under 13 minutes remaining when a Covington steal led to a jumper by Lindsay Smith.

Wisconsin took advantage of Northwestern's cold shooting, to take a 20-point lead (27-7) with under seven minutes to go on a jump shot by Covington. The Wildcats shot just 26.7 percent (8-of-30) in the first 20 minutes, including 2-of-12 (16.7 percent) from behind the arc.

Paige put on a show with four 3-pointers in a row to give UW its largest lead of the first half, 41-18, with 2:08 on the clock. NU closed out the half with a 6-0 run, heading into the locker room with the score 41-24 in favor of the Badgers.

The teams battled back and forth to start the second half and just when Northwestern (12-8, 2-5) appeared to be working its way back into the game, cutting UW's lead to 12 (49-37) at 11:11, Taylor Wurtz hit a 3-pointer to spark an 11-0 run.

Wisconsin's offense remained on fire as the Badgers took a 25-point lead, 73-48, with 4:03 to go. A pair of free throws by Covington at 3:19 closed out UW's strongest offensive performance of the season. The Wildcats scored two late baskets for the final.

UW's hot offense was paced by Covington's career high and Paige's 20-point performance. Covington recorded her third double-double of the season, while Paige marked her second-straight 20 point performance with a Kohl Center best six 3-pointers.

Wurtz chipped in 15 points and Jade Davis added eight. Wisconsin shot 28-of-61 (45.9 percent) from the floor, including 11-of-27 (40.7 percent) beyond the arc. The Badgers went 8-of-12 (66.7 percent) from the line.

After tallying just 19 rebounds at Iowa on Thursday, the Badgers pulled down 43 boards and dished out a season-best 17 assists. Wurtz added nine rebounds, just missing a double-double.

Northwestern finished the game 19-of-61 (31.1 percent) from the floor, including a 3-of-22 (13.6 percent) performance from 3-point range. NU went 14-of-24 (58.3 percent) from the free throw line as the Badgers were called for a season-high 21 fouls.  

The Badgers continue Big Ten action on the road, traveling to Minnesota on Thursday, Jan. 26 for a 7 p.m. tip-off against the Gophers.

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