MADISON, Wis. (AP) No. 15 Wisconsin was pushed by Northwestern into the final minutes.

The Badgers had an answer every time.

Max Klesmit scored a career-high 24 points and A.J. Storr had 14, leading Wisconsin to a 71-63 victory over Northwestern on Saturday.

The Badgers (13-3, 5-0 Big Ten) shot 50% (22 for 44) from the field and went 20 for 26 at the line.

Tyler Wahl, who scored 11 points for Wisconsin in its sixth straight win, praised his team for attacking the rim.

“It’s a confidence builder because you know that you’re going to get one or two points at the line,” Wahl said. “It kind of hinders the other team’s confidence because they might play a little more timid, and not as aggressive.”

Boo Buie scored 22 points for Northwestern (12-4, 3-2), and Brooks Barnhizer had 13.

“When you play the elite teams in the conference on the road, you want to be in a position right in the end to have a chance. And we were there,” Wildcats coach Chris Collins said.

Northwestern's Matthew Nicholson made two free throws with 2:51 left, tying it at 63. But Storr responded with a jumper, a key steal and two foul shots for Wisconsin.

Chucky Hepburn and Storr each made two free throws in the final 29 seconds to help the Badgers close it out.

Hepburn finished with four points, five rebounds, three assists and three steals. Klesmit said Hepburn is peaking at the right time.

“The mentality he has and the confidence he’s playing with and the confidence that we have in him is at an all-time high,” said Klesmit, who was 5 of 7 from 3-point range.

Wisconsin coach Greg Gard said Hepburn has been a difference maker.

“Chucky Hepburn, the way he’s sacrificed individual scoring for how he’s led this team and how he’s taken other team’s perimeter players and done a terrific job,” Gard said.

“He does a great job in commanding the point of our defense, and what we do.”

Wisconsin outrebounded Northwestern 31-25. Steven Crowl had a game-high eight rebounds for the Badgers.


Northwestern: Outside of Buie, the Wildcats had trouble scoring early on. Northwestern shot 36% from the field in the first half.

Wisconsin: Crowl had been dealing with a left knee contusion, but he had no apparent issues against the Wildcats.


Wisconsin is in a prime position to move up a few spots in the next AP poll.


Northwestern: Hosts Maryland on Wednesday.

Wisconsin: At Penn State on Tuesday.


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