Iowa Women's Basketball

Iowa women's basketball bounces back in a big way against Wisconsin

Wisconsin native McKenna Warnock torments the Badgers with 20 points off the bench in 97-71 win

IOWA CITY — McKenna Warnock grew up about a half-hour away from downtown Madison, home of the Wisconsin Badgers.

Yeah, this one mattered to her.

“To go to a rival school, I was excited to play them. I wanted to come out strong,” Warnock said.

Lisa Bluder didn’t miss a beat:

“And we’re glad she chose us,” she said.

Warnock made 4 of 5 shots from long distance in a 20-point performance off the bench, helping lift 17th-ranked Iowa to a 97-71 Big Ten women’s basketball victory over the Badgers before a crowd of 9,506 Sunday afternoon at Carver-Hawkeye Arena.

It was business as usual for the Hawkeyes (21-5, 12-3 Big Ten) in two ways. They won their 34th straight game at Carver, and their 22nd in a row against Wisconsin.

Unlike last time, when the Hawkeyes needed to rally from a 17-point deficit to beat the Badgers at Madison, there wasn’t much drama to this one. Iowa was relentlessly fast in transition in the first half and led from start to finish.

“We like to be up-tempo every game,” Bluder said. “Maybe we did a little better job at it today.”

Iowa jumped to an 8-1 lead in the first two minutes, then built a 25-10 advantage by the 2:02 mark of the first quarter.

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Warnock connected on back-to-back 3-pointers, then Makenzie Meyer hit another for a 50-32 advantage, the largest of the half.

It was 51-38 at intermission behind 11 points apiece by Warnock and Monika Czinano.

“We know McKenna is capable of putting up a lot of points,” Bluder said. “It’s significant to have a weapon like that off the bench.”

Iowa stayed a game behind league-leading Maryland — and a half-game in back of second-place Northwestern — in the Big Ten race.

The Hawkeyes and Maryland have three conference games to play, Northwestern has four left.

Wisconsin (11-15, 3-12) got within nine points twice in the third quarter, but never posed a serious threat. It was 74-58 at the end of the third quarter, then Iowa closed out the contest with the final 12 points.

Kathleen Doyle led all scorers with 22 points. Warnock added 20, Monika Czinano 19 and Meyer 13.

“Definitely a good bounce-back win for us,” Doyle said, referring to the Hawkeyes’ 93-59 loss at Maryland on Thursday.

The national leader in field-goal percentage at 70.1 percent before the game, Czinano improved on that a bit with an 8-for-11 effort Sunday.

“Everybody passed me the ball well,” Czinano said. “I couldn’t have passed it to myself any better.”

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Bluder responded, “Don’t go passing the ball to yourself, Monika,” and Doyle busted out laughing.

Doyle caused temporary concern when she was down in front of the Wisconsin bench late in the game.

“I just ran into a screen,” she said. “Hard.”

Imani Lewis collected 17 points and 12 rebounds for Wisconsin.

The Hawkeyes are off until Saturday, when they host Penn State.

IOWA 97, WISCONSIN 71

At Iowa City

WISCONSIN (71): Abby Laszewski 2-9 3-5 7, Imani Lewis 6-15 5-6 17, Kendra Van Leeuwen 3-5 2-4 8, Niya Beverley 2-7 4-4 9, Sydney Hilliard 5-12 0-2 10, Julie Pospisilova 2-5 0-0 6, Courtney Fredrickson 0-8 0-0 0, Suzanne Gilreath 2-5 0-0 6, Sara Stapleton 3-4 2-3 8, Tara Stauffacher 0-2 0-0 0, Diamond Bragg 0-0 0-0 0, Alex Luehring 0-2 0-0 0. Totals 25-74 16-24 71.

IOWA (97): Amanda Ollinger 1-5 0-0 2, Monika Czinano 8-11 3-4 19, Makenzie Meyer 4-7 2-2 13, Alexis Sevillian 1-4 0-0 2, Kathleen Doyle 7-14 7-10 22, McKenna Warnock 6-8 4-4 20, Gabbie Marshall 3-4 0-0 8, Zion Sanders 1-1 0-0 2, Tomi Taiwo 0-1 0-0 0, Logan Cook 1-2 3-4 5, Kate Martin 1-4 0-0 2, Megan Meyer 1-1 0-0 2, Paula Valino Ramos 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 34-62 19-24 97.

Halftime: Iowa 51, Wisconsin 38. 3-point goals: Wisconsin 5-16 (Van Leeuwen 0-1, Beverley 1-3, Hilliard 0-2, Pospisilova 2-4, Fredrickson 0-1, Gilreath 2-4, Stauffacher 0-1), Iowa 10-22 (Mak. Meyer 3-4, Sevillian 0-3, Doyle 1-4, Warnock 4-5, Marshall 2-3, Taiwo 0-1, Martin 0-2). Team fouls: Wisconsin 19, Iowa 20. Fouled out: none. Rebounds: Wisconsin 40 (Lewis 12), Iowa 42 (Ollinger 10). Assists: Wisconsin 10 (Beverley, Hilliard 3), Iowa 21 (Doyle 5). Steals: Wisconsin 4 (four with 1), Iowa 7 (Doyle, Warnock, Sanders 2). Turnovers: Wisconsin 12, Iowa 14.

Attendance: 9,506.

Comments: (319) 368-8857; jeff.linder@thegazette.com

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