Madison – The Wisconsin Badgers opened the much-anticipated 2014-2015 basketball season against the Northern Kentucky University Friday night. The Badgers cruised to an easy victory over the Norse 62 to 31. Forwards Frank Kaminsky led the way with 17 points, 11 rebounds and four assists on his way to a double double, the first of the season. Sam Dekker tacked on 15 points and two rebounds.
The Badgers started slow in the first half, going scoreless on their first three possessions. The Badgers led at the halfway mark 28-15 behind Kaminksy’s ten points and seven rebounds. Nigel Hayes grabbed 7 rebounds in the first half, as did Kaminsky. The Badgers shot 45.8% in the first half and went 3-11 from three-point range in the half. The defense did hold the Norse to 28% shooting in the first half.
The Badgers came out much more inspired in the second half. The Badgers shot much better and kept up their level of intensity on defense. Wisconsin shot 12 for 23 in the second half and finished the game at 48.9%. Traevon Jackson finished the game with nine points, all in the second half, while Nigel Hayes had six points and ten rebounds. Rounding out the starters, Josh Gasser had six points and five rebounds.
The Badgers held Northern Kentucky to 26.4% from the field and 12.5% from three. Northern Kentucky’s leading scorer was Daniel Camps with eight points. Wisconsin outrebounded the Norse 42 to 28, grabbing seven offensive rebounds and 35 defensive. The Badgers committed nine turnovers on the night but countered that with 13 assists.
The Badgers next take the court against Chattanooga on Sunday at noon. The game can be found on ESPNNEWS.