WBB Wins at Wisconsin 73-63
Jan. 18, 2015
MADISON, Wisc. - Kahleah Copper (Philadelphia, Pa.) netted her 1,000th career point and Cynthia Hernandez (Ventura, Calif.) collected a season-high 17 points, shooting a blistering 5-of-6 from three-point range, as the No. 24/22 Rutgers women's basketball team returned to the win column in a 73-63 victory over Wisconsin on Sunday at the Kohl Center.
The Scarlet Knights improved to 13-5 overall and 4-3 in Big Ten play, while the Badgers fell to 7-10 overall and 3-4 in league action.
Hernandez was one of five Scarlet Knights in double figures in the victory. In addition to her game-high 17 points, Betnijah Laney (Clayton, Del.) captured her 12th double-double of the season with 12 points and 11 rebounds. Copper, who collected her 1,000th career point off a free throw midway through the second half, ended the game with 14 points, while Rachel Hollivay (Columbus, Miss.) came off the bench for 11 points. Tyler Scaife (Little Rock, Ark.) rounded out the double figure Scarlet Knights with 10 points.
The Badgers were led by Dakota Whyte with 17 points, while Jacki Gulczynski added in 13 points and Tessa Cichy had 10 points in the loss.
It was a slow start to the game as neither team could find an offensive rhythm in the opening minutes. It took over three minutes in before Wisconsin brought the scoreless drought and from there it was a back and forth battle. The game endured six ties before Rutgers took its first lead of the afternoon. Hernandez drained the first of her five three-pointers to give the Scarlet Knights a 15-14 edge with 11:30 left in the opening stanza.
While the Badgers would knot the score at 17-17 moments later off a Gulczynski three-pointer, RU would go on a 5-0 run to reclaim the lead for good. Briyona Canty (Willingboro, N.J.), in her second game back from a bone bruise suffered in the Big Ten opener at Indiana on Dec. 28, connected on a jumper to give Rutgers its largest lead of the first half, a nine-point, 32-23, edge with 3:28 remaining.
Wisconsin, however, had a late push rattling off six answered points to pull within three with less than 15 seconds remaining before the intermission. Following a timeout, Hernandez hit another three at the buzzer to give the Scarlet Knights a 35-29 lead heading into the locker room.
After Rutgers extended its lead to 10 in the opening moments of the second half, the Badgers used an 8-2 run to close to shrink their deficit down to four. Whyte capped the run on a fastbreak with 13:47 to go as RU held on to a 41-37 lead.
A three-pointer by Gulczynski and a layup by Whyte pulled the Badgers to within one, 43-42, with 12:12 to play, but Hernandez and Syessence Davis (Neptune, N.J.) hit back-to-back three's to spark a 19-6 Scarlet Knight run.
Copper gave Rutgers its largest lead of the afternoon off a free throw as the Scarlet Knights pushed ahead 49-63 with 6:33 left in the game.
An 8-2 output by Wisconsin's trimmed the Badger deficit to eight about four minutes later, but a free throw by Hollivay and another shot from downtown by Hernandez made it 69-57 with 1:56 remaining.
The Rutgers women's basketball team has a week to rest up before its next contest. The Scarlet Knights host Minnesota on Sunday, Jan. 25 at 5:15 p.m. at the RAC. The game will be televised on BTN.
- RU finished with five in double figures for the third time this season and for the first time since the Davidson game on Nov. 30.
- Kahleah Copper ended the game with 14 points and became the 35th Scarlet Knight to reach 1,000 career points. She knocked down the first of two free throws at the 8:07 mark to accomplish the feat. She is the second Scarlet Knight to reach the 1,000 career point mark this season. Teammate Betnijah Laney reached the mark in RU's game with UNC on Dec. 4.
- Cynthia Hernandez finished with a season-high 17 points surpassing her previous high of nine captured against Davidson (Nov. 30) and Indiana (Dec. 28).
- Hernandez shot a blistering 5-of-6 from downtown. Her five made three-pointers were the most by a Scarlet Knight since Erica Wheeler drained five three-pointers against Connecticut on March 7, 2011.
- Hernandez's five three's tied a Kohl Center record originally set by Lori Bjork of Illinois on Jan. 15, 2006.
- Hernandez now has 18 three-point field goals thru 18 games.
Briyona Canty had the most three-point field goals made last season, connecting on 13 from beyond the arc over the course of the Scarlet Knights' 37 games.
- Betnijah Laney collected her 12th double-double of the season with 12 points and 11 rebounds.
- Laney went a perfect 4-of-4 from the line and has gone 10-of-10 from the charity stripe in the last three games (4-of-4 at Penn State & 2-of-2 vs. Maryland).
- With her 11 rebounds, Laney now has 769 career rebounds moving into ninth all-time past C'ta Michelson (1989-93). She needs 12 more boards to move past June Olkowski (1978-82) for eighth all-time.
- Rachel Hollivay added in 11 points going 5-of-6 from the field and 1-of-2 from the line. It was her seventh double figure scoring game of the season and 23rd of her career. She has reached double figures in three of her last four games, averaging 9.8 points per game during that span.
- Tyler Scaife also added in 10 points marking the 15th game this season in double figures and 43rd game of her career.
- Briyona Canty in her second game back from a bone bruise in her right need, dished out the ball five times, marking the ninth time this season and 16th in her career she has handed the ball out five or more times in a game.
- Syessence Davis registered three steals against the Badgers and now has 252 career thefts. She needs six more steals to surpass Vicky Picott (1987-91) for seventh all-time on the RU steals leaders list.
- The Scarlet Knights committed a season-low nine turnovers, which included only one miscue in the first half. RU's previous low this season was 11 in the season opener with St. Joseph's. Last time Rutgers had less than 10 turnovers was against Harvard on Mar. 24, 2014 in the WNIT when the Scarlet Knights had only eight miscues.
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