February 23, 2012; Columbus, OH, USA; Ohio State Buckeyes center Ashley Adams (33) defends as Minnesota Golden Gophers center Amber Dvorak (55) maneuvers for a shot at Value City Arena. Ohio State won the game 81-56. Mandatory Credit: Greg Bartram-US PRESSWIRE
The Minnesota Golden Gophers women's basketball team will play the Wisconsin Badgers in the first round of the 2012 Big Ten Tournament.
The Big Ten Tournament tips off on Thursday for the women as the bracket features four games on the schedule for the first day. The Minnesota Golden Gophers will take part in the third game as they play the Wisconsin Badgers for the right to play the top-seeded Penn State Nittany Lions on Friday.
The Golden Gophers, featuring Big Ten Freshman of the Year Rachel Banham, are the No. 8 seed in the tournament. Minnesota dropped a six-point decision to the Badgers when the two teams played in January, but showed life late as they rallied from a 16-point deficit at one point in the contest. Hopefully they somehow carry that momentum into Thursday's game as they are just 5-17 lifetime in the tournament, having advanced past their first round just once.
The Badgers finished the year with a 9-19 record, but picked up a big win over the Illinois Fighting Illini late in the regular season to improve their conference record to 5-11. Taylor Wurtz, a 6-foot junior, is averaging a team-high 16.3 points per contest.
The postseason Border Battle will be televised live on the Big Ten Network when the two teams tip off at 6 p.m. ET. The winner will play Penn State at the same time, on the same channel, Friday.