Illinois' senior forward Angelina Williams harassed the Badgers all day, putting up 28 points, while senior guard Tiffanie Guthrie had 16 points. The Illini shot 50 percent from the field.
"Our hats are off to Illinois. Their dynamic duo of Williams and Guthrie did us in," UW head coach Lisa Stone said. "We didn't have the team effort I wanted for the entire 40 minutes. I thought we would've gotten more of a fire after our game at Michigan State."
The Badgers rallied against the Spartans Thursday before losing 74-66.
Wisconsin, though, could not use a strong finish at MSU as momentum Sunday, falling to 1-5 in road games this season.
Williams was not the only factor that sank the hopes of a second conference win for Wisconsin (6-9, 1-5). Fouls — Wisconsin committed 23 — contributed, as the Illini picked up 23 points from the charity stripe. Wisconsin also had 16 turnovers, which Illinois turned into 17 points.
The Badgers opened the game with an 11-2 run but the Illini whittled Wisconsin's lead down and went ahead 12-11 with 13:51 left in the first half. The lead went back-and-forth throughout the opening stanza but at 6:48 Williams nailed a 3-pointer to give the Illini a 27-24 edge. Wisconsin, meanwhile, suffered a three-minute, 21 second scoring drought that allowed the Illini to take a 31-24.
Williams hot shooting – she had 15 points in the first half – led to a 42-30 Illini lead at halftime.
Wisconsin made a 9-0 run in the second half to close within 55-47 but Illinois limited the Badgers to six points off free throws in a five-minute, 26-second stretch late in the game.
Senior guard Stephanie Rich led the Badgers with 15 points and also contributed three rebounds and three assists, while freshman guard Janese Banks finished with 13 points and a team-high eight rebounds.