Hill leads No. 9 OSU women past Wisconsin, 77-61
MADISON, Wis.—Tayler Hill scored 21 points and No. 9 Ohio State beat Wisconsin 77-61 Friday night in the Big Ten opener for both teams.
Samantha Prahalis, fourth in the Big Ten at almost 18 points a game, struggled from the field for the Buckeyes (14-0), shooting 4 of 15. She finished with 12 points and 11 assists.
Taylor Wurtz and Ashley Thomas scored 10 points apiece to lead the Badgers (4-9), who are in the middle of a stretch in which they play five of six games against ranked opponents.
Wisconsin has averaged less than 49 points and shot 36 percent over its last four games, but Ohio State led just 38-37 at the half as the Badgers shot almost 44 percent.
The Buckeyes then reeled off a 20-2 run to open the second half and push their lead to 58-39 to take control.
Wisconsin was able to pull within 60-50, but didn't get any closer. The Badgers shot 33 percent for the second half, including just 2 of 7 from behind the 3-point line after hitting 6 of 13 to start the game.
Ohio State got into lulls in which its offense got stagnant and relied too much on the 3-pointers. As a team, Ohio State shot 5 of 14 from behind the arc. But the Buckeyes had the most success when they consistently pushed the ball inside. They finished with 38 points in the paint to 16 for Wisconsin.
It's the second time in a row Wisconsin has played a ranked team tough in the first half only to fade in the second period. The Badgers led No. 18 Wisconsin-Green Bay 34-28 at half last week only to score just 15 in the second half and lose 65-49.