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First look: Badgers dominate Warriors in first exhibition game of season

Game Photo
Winona State Wisconsin 80, Winona State 49
Kohl Center • Madison, Wis. • Attendance: 3,479

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1st 2nd Final
  Winona State
23 26 49
35 45 80
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 Statistical Leaders
 • Michala Johnson: 24 Pts, 8 Reb, 12-15 FG
 • Morgan Paige: 14 Pts, 3 Reb, 2 Stl, 5-13 FG
 • AnnMarie Brown: 12 Pts, 4 Reb, 2 Ast, 5-6 FG
 Stats at a Glance
 FG Percentage .339 .515
 3-Point FG Percentage .217 .318
 FT Percentage .667 .714
 Offensive Rebounds 6 11
 Defensive Rebounds 22 33
 Total Rebounds 28 44
 Turnovers 13 8
 Assists 7 18
 Steals 3 7
 Wisconsin Women's Basketball Online
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Nov. 3, 2013

– More than 3,000 fans were treated to a show Sunday afternoon at the Kohl Center as the Wisconsin women’s basketball team defeated Winona State, 80-49, in the first exhibition game of the 2013-14 season.

Seven Badgers found the back of the net, with redshirt junior Michala Johnson leading the scoring barrage with 24 points in 24 minutes of action. Senior Morgan Paige added 14 points, shooting 3-of-6 from beyond the arc, and AnnMarie Brown chipped in 12 points. Fifth-year senior Taylor Wurtz put up eight points in her return to the court after missing most of last season with a back injury.

 Fast Facts
Michala Johnson led Badgers with 24 points
• Three Badgers scored double-digits
• Wisconsin shot 51.5 percent (34-66) from the field

“(I was) very happy with the win for our team,” said UW head coach Bobbie Kelsey after the game.  “I thought for the most part we played really well.

“Some people gave us key contributions. Michala coming out for the first time, really showed what she can do. And Taylor coming back from her injury, she’ll play much better.”

Kelsey is looking to Wurtz and Michala Johnson to lead the team throughout the season.

“They are natural leaders, they lead by example with their play but also in the classroom,” said Kelsey of the duo. “They are very good examples for what we would like our players to be.

“On the court, with Taylor’s shooting ability, she’s able to separate herself from the defense and really get her shot off. It wasn’t falling for her as much tonight as it usually does, but this was her first game back from a major back surgery. I’m proud of Taylor, just to come out and get back into the swing of things.”

Wisconsin rolled to a 41-23 lead at half and then opened the second stanza with a dominating 6-0 run, with four of the points coming from Johnson, to take control of the game.

Eleven Badgers saw action against the Warriors, including freshman Malayna Johnson, Michala Johnson’s younger sister, as Wisconsin pushed the tempo and the score.

“We’re closer than last year,” said Kelsey of the team’s preferred up-tempo playing style. “When we were able to pick up the pace tonight, you saw what we can do. When you have a block presence and some players who can hit threes, (that’s tough to defend).”

Wurtz and Michala Johnson led Wisconsin on the boards, pulling down eight a piece. UW finished the game outrebounding the Warriors 44-28.

The Badgers were 34-of-66 (51.5 percent) from the floor, shooting 7-of-22 (31.8 percent) from 3-point range. The Warriors shot 19-of-56 (33.9 percent), shooting just 5-of-23 (21.7 percent) beyond the arc.

Winona State was led by Kate Hartman with 12 points while Kelsey Andrist added 11 points.

Wisconsin dished off 18 assists, including a game-high seven from sophomore Dakota Whyte, who started a point. UW also turned the ball over only eight times.

Wisconsin hosts UW-Stevens Point in its final exhibition game of the season on Thursday, Nov. 7, in the Kohl Center. Tip time is 7 p.m.

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