Morgan Paige hit a pair of free throws to help the Wisconsin Badgers knock off Illinois 58-57 in the first round of the Big Ten Tournament on
Thursday afternoon. The win pushes the Badgers into the second round of play against Purdue at 2pm Friday at the Sears Centre in Hoffman Estates, Illinois.
Wisconsin’s Tessa Cichy, in her first career start, hit a pair of free throws to cut the Illinois lead to 57-56. Paige then hit the game winners in the final seconds.
The Badgers trailed by 10 points at the break (30-20) after a sluggish start, but they came alive in the second half, outscoring Illinois (16-13) 38-27 in the second half to pull out the win.
Paige finished with a game high 18 points for Wisconsin (12-18). Jacki Gulczynski added 15 points and Cassie Rochel netted a double-double with 10 points and 13 rebounds.
Wisconsin held Illinois to 32.2% shooting (19-59) from the field and forced 11 Illini turnovers. Wisconsin shot 37.8% for the game, but 50% in the second half (11-22). Wisconsin also shot a school record 21-of-21 from the free throw line.