Wisconsin women’s basketball runs out of steam against Kansas State

The first 12½ minutes on Friday showed the potential of Wisconsin’s young women’s basketball team.

However, the final 37 minutes were filled with lessons that coach Marisa Moseley hopes her team will learn from in the future.

UW lost game one of the Brew City Battle 77-63 to Kansas State at American Family Field. After a 13-point lead, the Badgers (1-1) struggled to protect the ball and keep up with the Wildcats’ physical play. Those issues contributed to a minus 17 point difference in the fourth quarter after UW scored the last five points of the third quarter to tie.

“Thanks to the State of Kansas. They did a lot of threes in the fourth quarter,” Moseley said. “When the ball goes in, you have a lot more energy. If you’re missing a few shots and a few chippies, things get a little tighter.”

“I think we definitely have a good side and I’m looking forward to the rest of this season. That was a big test for us at the beginning.”

Freshman guard Maty Wilke finished with 17 points and four rebounds for Wisconsin. Senior guard Julie Pospisilova also had 17 points on 6-for-15 shooting and grabbed nine rebounds. Freshman forward Serah Williams added 11 points. Senior guard Avery LaBarbera had 13 points, six rebounds and five assists.

Kansas State won the 1,000th game in its program history and improved to 2-0. Gabby Gregory led the Wildcats with 25 points, 14 of which came in the second half.

“We got hit in the mouth. We weren’t very physical at all and then I thought we decided we’re going to push back here,” said Kansas State coach Jeff Mittie.

Second chance, expensive sales in the fourth quarter

For a team that was outscored by 14 points in the fourth quarter, Wisconsin shot well. The Badgers hit 6 of 11 attempts in the last 10 minutes.

Their problem was ball safety. After rallying at the end of the third game to level the game, they opened the fourth with five turnovers in the first 5 minutes of the fourth.

These mistakes resulted in five points at this distance. Six points were from second chance varsity, with four of the buckets coming from offensive rebounds that didn’t follow any of UW’s turnovers.

That’s exactly nine points. It was no coincidence that the Badgers were trailing 62-52 with 5 minutes to go. Kansas State hit three threes during that 16-6 run.

The flow of the game was similar to UW’s win at UW-Milwaukee on Monday. The Badgers saw their 18-point lead reduced to five that game before leaving town in a 58-49 win. This time they couldn’t stop Kansas State.

“Obviously we’re capable of playing well,” Moseley said. “We have to figure out how to really step on people’s necks in those moments and make sure we can get stops and points and extend the lead instead of letting people slip back in.”

Maty Wilke continues her promising start

The loss marked Wilke’s second straight quality performance. She hit seven of 14 shots and was 3 for 9 from three-point range. Twelve of those points came in the first half when UW held a 33-30 lead.

It was her three-pointer with 57 seconds left in the third quarter that tied the game. However, she only got one shot in the fourth quarter.

“She’s just not a three-point shooter. It’s everywhere,” Moseley said. “She attacks the basket. She plays defense. She fights inside. Your impact is priceless for us.”

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