MINNEAPOLIS -- Kenisha Bell had 17 points and 10 rebounds for her first double-double of the season, Annalese Lamke scored 20 points and No. 12 Minnesota opened Big Ten Conference play with a 74-56 win over Wisconsin on Friday night.
The Gophers (12-0) matched the 2002-03 team, when first-year coach Lindsay Whalen was a senior, for the second-best start in school history. The Minnesota record is 15-0 when Whalen was a junior.
Minnesota never trailed as Destiny Pitts scored the first two baskets of the game to start an 11-2 burst. Bell's 3 made it 17-7 after one quarter and it was 32-22 at the half. Minnesota shot 29 percent in the first half (10 of 34) but the Badgers shot 26 percent (8 of 31). The teams combined for 51 rebounds.
Wisconsin (9-4), off to its best start since 2009-10, scored the first basket of the second half, the last time the lead was less than double figures. No Badgers player hit double figures and the final shooting percent was 35 despite a 9 of 16 fourth quarter.
Lamke was 6-of-7 shooting and 8 of 10 from the foul line to finish one point shy of her career high.