Coming back from a 33-point defeat to No. 15 Maryland, Marisa Moseley’s Wisconsin squad (7-17, 4-10 Big Ten) erased a 22-point deficit against the Purdue Boilermakers (14-11, 5-9 Big Ten) with an impressive second half performance.
The Badgers started slow, nearly failing to scratch the scoresheet for the entire opening period. They shot a dismal 1-14 from the field and 0-4 from 3-point range with seven giveaways during the first 10 minutes of regulation, allowing Purdue to establish a 15-point lead.
Wisconsin’s offensive struggles extended into the second period, and with seven points from junior Abbey Ellis, the Boilermakers outscored the University of Wisconsin and extended their advantage to 20 by intermission. The Badgers shot 15.4% from the field during the first half, and Moseley’s group faced yet another double-digit hole entering the latter portion of the contest.
UW’s herculean effort started with a layup from sophomore Brooke Schramek within the first minute of the second half. Wisconsin hit three shots from behind-the-arc, enough to cut Purdue’s lead to 11 with 6:45 to spare in the period. The Badgers executed on 58.3% of their field goals compared to just 17.65% from Purdue. With just ten minutes remaining before the final buzzer, UW’s momentum was undeniable.
A pair of free throws from Schramek and two consecutive scores from Julie Pospíšilová cut the Boilermaker edge to just four points. Purdue responded with four consecutive free throws, reestablishing their eight-point advantage with six minutes to play. UW stormed back with 10-0 scoring run and finally took the lead on a Pospíšilová 3-pointer with a mere minute to spare. Following two free throws from point guard Katie Nelson, Purdue freshman Jayla Smith missed on a look beneath the basket with an opportunity to tie the game.
Without UW star Sydney Hilliard, sophomore Brooke Schramek picked up some of the slack with 13 points and nine rebounds. Point guard Katie Nelson led UW in minutes played, contributing 10 points and eight assists. In her 36 minutes of action, junior guard Julie Pospíšilová secured a game-high 15 points and corralled four rebounds on six made field goals. Freshman Krystyna Ellew nailed three long-range shots and grabbed seven rebounds to add to the comeback, making the win a true team effort from UW.
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For Purdue, junior Abbey Ellis recorded a team-high 11 points with 57% shooting from the floor. Junior guard Jeanae Terry snatched 17 (yes, 17) rebounds and distributed seven assists in her 34 minutes. Teammate Cassidy Hardin poured in three 3-point field goals for Gearlds’ group.
Going forward, the Badgers will look for another victory when they tip off against the Michigan State Spartans for the first time this season in Madison on Feb. 16.