Revenge Factor

A week after losing to Indiana by 27, the Badgers redeem themselves, breaking a two-game conference losing streak in the process with a seven-point victory.

MADISON – Exactly one week after Indiana held serve on their home court in Bloomington, the Badgers were able to return the favor.

Jolene Anderson scored 20 points and Rae D'Alie orchestrated the second-half charge as Wisconsin defeated Indiana 60-53 in one of the wildest games of the season.

After a first half that saw both schools put up horrendous shooing percentage, Wisconsin shot 22 percent while Indiana finished at 23, the second half saw the Hoosiers (15-10, 4-8 Big Ten) build a seven-point lead based off the Badgers inability to hang onto the basketball. Indiana converted 20 turnovers into 18 points and visibly frustrated Wisconsin.

Needing a spark, the 5-foot-3 D'Alie once again played the role of the igniter.

With Wisconsin (17-7, 6-6 Big Ten) down seven, D'Alie began working her magic. In three consecutive plays, D'Alie converted the three-point play when she was fouled driving to the bucket, made an outlet pass to Mariah Dunham for an open three and executed the half-court trap to perfection by forcing one of Indiana's 17 turnovers on the game.

"She's loves to play the game and it gets our whole team going because she does everything we need her to do," head coach Lisa Stone said.

With three minutes to go and the Badgers clinging to a two-point lead, Anderson found Dunham wide open in the paint for two of her 10 points to give the Badgers a four-point advantage. Hoosier guard and Marshfield, Wisconsin native Jamie Braun countered with a deep three-pointer in front of the Hoosier bench to cut the Wisconsin lead to one.

Anderson made sure that would be the closest Indiana would get. On Wisconsin's next possession, Anderson buried a three from the wing that pushed the lead back to four that simultaneously deflated the Hoosiers, as Indiana made only one field goal in the game's last two minutes.

"My teammates expect me to shoot when I am that wide-open," Anderson said. "I obviously knew that I had missed the six before that. I just let it fly and it went in."

"She's just one of the kids who doesn't care how many shots she takes and she doesn't care," Indiana head coach Felisha Legette-Jack said. "When she gets an open look, she's going to put up the next one. Her thought process is that she's good enough to make that shot because she's put in the time. That was a great shot and Jolene is a great player."

If Indiana had any life left, D'Alie knocked the Hoosiers out cold. Rae Lin was a perfect 6-for-6 from the line in the final minute, finishing the game with 14 points and ensuring the Wisconsin victory.

"She's clutch," Stone said. "That's the best way I can put it. You're putting the ball in hands of a freshman nearing the end of the Big Ten season and she takes care of the ball. We want the ball in her hands. She's a great free throw shooter and she proved that tonight.

"I was nervous at all," Stone added. "I knew those were going in."

Wisconsin had plenty of opportunities to build a large lead on the Hoosiers, who went nearly 11 minutes between field goals and found no rhythm offensively. But the Badgers weren't much better, turning the ball over 11 times and having their worst shooting half of the season (22 percent).

But the Badgers weathered the stone because of their defense. A week after Indiana's Sarah McKay and Nikki Smith combined for 40 points against Wisconsin, the Badgers held the duo to just 17 points on 3-for-21 shooting and the Hoosier as a team to just 30 percent.

"Our defensive intensity was rolling off the bat," D'Alie said. "Whenever we are rolling on defense, it seems like the whole game is different for us. Even though our offense was struggling, we were still getting stops and keeping the game close."

When D'Alie and Wisconsin began their push in the second half, rattling off a 15-4 run with under 10 minutes left, Indiana couldn't match the Badgers' hunger.

"The hungrier team won tonight," Indiana head coach Felisha Legette-Jack said. "We didn't bring our emotions or our intensity of where we needed to be. We dug too big of a hole emotionally to crawl out of."

The victory provided some redemption for Wisconsin after being thoroughly manhandled by the Hoosiers in a 27-point clobbering seven days ago. With the win, the Badgers move into solo possession of fifth place in conference, assure themselves of their best home record in seven years and, more importantly, represented the university in a much better way.

"We wanted to represent the university better than we did last Thursday," Anderson said. "It was a disappointment to the university as a whole that we went down and represented the way we did. We got the win and we represented [Wisconsin] better."

Up next: Iowa

Due to the weird, unbalanced scheduling in the Big Ten, the Badgers will play Iowa for the first time this season on Sunday afternoon. So far, Wisconsin has already played Michigan, Minnesota and Northwestern twice and has yet to play Iowa or Purdue.

Iowa (12-12 overall, 4-7 Big Ten) sits in ninth place in the Big Ten and has snapped their five-game conference losing streak with a win over Michigan on Thursday night. Despite their recent woes, three of Iowa's four wins have come on the road, as the Hawkeyes are 3-3 away from Iowa City. Iowa isn't a push-over though, as they lead the Big Ten in free throw percentage (78.4) and are second in three-point makes (shooting 38.3 percent).

Iowa leads the all-time series against Wisconsin 30-19, including winning six of the last seven.

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