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Taylor Wahl leads Wisconsin to comfortable win vs. South Dakota

Mar 17, 2022; Milwaukee, WI, USA; Wisconsin Badgers head coach Greg Gard leads the team during practice before the first round of the 2022 NCAA Tournament at Fiserv Forum. Mandatory Credit: Benny Sieu-USA TODAY Sports
Credit: Benny Sieu-USA TODAY Sports

Taylor Wahl had 19 points and 10 rebounds and three other Wisconsin players scored in double-figures in the Badgers’ season-opening 85-59 win Monday night over South Dakota at Madison, Wis.

Chucky Hepburn scored 14 points, Steve Crowl had 12 points and Max Klesmit 11.

Wahl, who had 17 of his points in the second half, made 5 of 11 shots from the field and 9 of 10 from the free-throw line. He also had four assists to lead the Badgers.

Kruz Perrott-Hunt was South Dakota’s leading scorer with 21 points on 10-of-20 shooting from the field.

He had only four points in the second half on 2-of-7 shooting from the field.

Paul Bruns finished with 10 points for the Coyotes.

Wisconsin, which never trailed, started taking control of the game in the last 2 minutes of the first half, outscoring South Dakota 8-2 to take a 38-28 halftime lead.

Hepburn, a true freshman, made two 3-pointers in that stretch.

A 1-for-11 stretch from the field for South Dakota bridging the first and second halves allowed Wisconsin to take a 40-28 lead with 18:30 left.

Wisconsin put together a 9-2 run to increase the lead 53-36 with 14:23 remaining.

South Dakota did not come closer than 15 points afterward.

The Coyotes went 2-for-15 from 3-point range in the game. They missed their first 12 shots from beyond the arc before A.J. Plitzuweit’s triple with 9:05 left.

Wisconsin made 12 shots from 3-point range, converting 46.2 percent from there.

The Badgers made 50.9 percent of their shots overall.

They limited South Dakota to 40.4 percent shooting (23 of 57) from the field.

The Coyotes produced only seven assists with 10 turnovers.

Wisconsin doubled South Dakota’s assist total with a transition-style offense. The Badgers outscored South Dakota 13-5 in fast-break points.

The Badgers improved to 6-1 in season openers under Greg Gard.

–Field Level Media