Credit Source: University of Wisconsin Athletics
MADISON, Wis. — Battling their fourth-straight top-25 ranked team, the Wisconsin women’s basketball team fell just short against No. 9 Maryland on Sunday afternoon in the Kohl Center. The Badgers gave the Terrapins a scare before falling, 79-70.
Wisconsin (3-8, 0-8 B1G) had three Badgers score in double digits with sophomore Sydney Hilliard leading the charge against the Big Ten-leading Terrapins (11-1, 7-0). The sophomore finished with 19 points, including 11 in the second half, while adding six rebounds, four assists and three steals. Sophomore Julie Pospisilova added 18 points to the UW offense, shooting 4-6 from 3-point range, and dished off a team-high five assists.
Junior Imani Lewis had one of her best outings of the season, dominating down low for Wisconsin and finishing with 17 points and 14 rebounds while shooting 7-8 (.875) from the free-throw line. Lewis recorded her fourth double-double of the season, leading Wisconsin to just a four-point deficit at halftime as she was only one rebound short of notching a double-double in the first half.
After trailing by only four points at the half (39-35), Maryland outscored the Badgers 19-11 in the third quarter to lead 58-46 after three quarters. The Terrapins led by as many as 17 points (65-48) with less than three minutes gone in the fourth quarter and were up 16 (72-56) with 3:37 to play before the Badgers began a late rally. UW cut the lead to 74-65 with 1:14 remaining but Maryland went 5-6 from the free-throw line to seal the win.
Wisconsin’s defense played one of its best games of the season, holding the Terrapins to nearly 15 points below their season average. The Badgers also held Maryland to 38.2% (26-68) from field goal range, including just 28.6% (6-21) from 3-point range, well below its season average of 48.5% from the field.
UW shot 44.1% (26-59) from the field but just 33.3% (6-18) from 3-point range. The Terps won the battle at the free-throw line, making 21 of 25 attempts for 84% while the Badgers shot a season-best 92.3% (12-13). Wisconsin was called for 20 fouls compared to 11 for Maryland.
The Terrapins also won the rebounding battle, 44-29, behind a game high 17 boards from Mimi Collins. Collins was one of five Maryland players who scored in double figures behind 17 points from Chloe Bibby and Diamond Miller.
Wisconsin dished off 16 assists while turning the ball over a season-low 11 times.
Straight from the court
Head Coach Jonathan Tsipis:
“I think if we have effort and can compete at that level, that puts us in positions that we have not been in in some of the past games. Our huddles were better, our communication defensively was better, even when at times things didn’t go exactly how we would like, I thought we found ways to finish the possession and found ways to get the right shot.”
Junior Forward Imani Lewis:
“I think we did really well prepping for Maryland and being ready to bring the effort because we knew last game we didn’t have effort and we weren’t there… We all gave each other energy and encouragement. This game we showed we can compete with anyone. We showed the effort, we played with heart, we did not give up.”
Notes to know:
For the second straight game, the Badgers held a ranked team well below its season average for points. Wisconsin held Maryland to 79 points, well below its season average of 93.7 points per game.
- Junior Imani Lewis recorded her fourth double-double of the season with 17 points and a season-high 14 rebounds. The 6-foot-1 forward has 23 double-doubles for her career, needing just one more to move into a tie for sixth on the Wisconsin record list.
- UW had three players score in double figures for the first time in four games. Sydney Hilliard led Wisconsin with 19 points while Julie Pospisilova added 18 points and Imani Lewis contributed 17.
- Wisconsin recorded a season-low 11 turnovers, after recording 18-or-more the last four games. UW also tallied 16 assists vs. the Terps, its fifth game this season with 16-or-more assists.
- The Badgers shot a season-high 92.3% (12-13) from the free-throw line.
- Freshman Halle Douglass recorded her first career block.
- Sophomore Sydney Hilliard tied her career high by taking 19 field goal attempts.
- Freshman Kate Thompson recorded her second career steal.
After a four-game stretch against ranked opponents, Wisconsin looks to use that experience as it travel to Purdue this Thursday. Tip off is set for 5 p.m. CT and fans can tune in on Big Ten Network+ or U 100.9 FM radio.