Northwestern put up one last shot as time ran out in the second overtime, and Rachel Banham rebounded the miss. It was her ball, her game.
Banham, the Gophers’ fifth-year senior guard, had just put on one of the best scoring displays in the history of women’s college basketball. She tied the NCAA record for points in a game with 60 in the Gophers’ 112-106 victory over the Wildcats on Sunday at Welsh-Ryan Arena in Evanston, Ill.
Banham used everything in her well-stocked arsenal as she accounted for more than half of her team’s points. There were step-back three-pointers, pull-up jumpers, scoop layups, plenty of free throws. Even when she was off, she was on. She banked in a three.
Maybe she should change her first name to Steph, as in Curry..
“I don’t even have words for today,” Banham said in a postgame radio interview. “I’m shaking a little bit.”
Banham had 20 points in the first half, 22 in the second half, 10 in the first overtime and eight in the second.
Overall, she shot 19-for-32 from the field, including 8-for-15 from three-point range, and made 14 of 16 free throws in 47 minutes of playing time. She also had nine rebounds and four assists. The game was televised on the Big Ten Network.
‘‘It’s been incredible,’’ Banham said. ‘‘Everyone’s been so supportive. My family, my teammates, you know, just everyone on Twitter and Instagram and everything. ... It’s been great, and I’m so happy we got the win.’’
Banham, who upped her season scoring average to 25.8 points per game, matched the 60 points scored by Cindy Brown of Long Beach State against San Jose State on Feb. 16, 1987. She also shattered her own personal best of 39 points, as well as the Gophers and Big Ten records.
‘‘You know, and I’ve scored 39 points and been like, “Wow, that’s pretty cool,” Banham said. ‘‘But I don’t even remember half the points right now. I think I’m still a little on the rush of the whole thing that happened. It’s all so surreal.’’
Two Big Ten players have scored 49 points, with one of them doing it in a league game. That was Penn State’s Kelly Mazzante against the Gophers on Dec. 28, 2001, at the Sports Pavilion.
The Gophers record had been 44, achieved twice by Carol Ann Shudlick in the early 1990s. Shudlick was in attendance Sunday.
The school record for a Big Ten game, 41, was held by two players. Lindsay Whalen was the last to do it on Feb. 14, 2002, against Purdue.
“I’m just somewhat speechless,” Gophers coach Marlene Stollings said. “That was history in the making.”
Banham’s game reached a new level in the fourth quarter. After Northwestern star Nia Coffey, who finished with 28 points, went to the bench with her fourth foul, Banham scored every point in an 11-1 run that gave the Gophers their first lead since the second quarter.
Still, the Gophers needed a closing 8-2 run to force the first overtime and a 7-2 run to force the second overtime.
Northwestern had open looks at the end of regulation and the first overtime but couldn’t convert. Maggie Lyon tied a career high with 31 points but was only 1-for-10 from three-point range. Coffey, the Hopkins High School product, fouled out in the second overtime. She was one of three Wildcats who registered double digits in rebounds.
“Your will vs. their will and our will won out today,” Stollings said.
The Gophers (16-7, 8-4) won for the sixth time in their past seven games. They sit alone in fourth place in the Big Ten with six conference games to go.
In two victories against Northwestern (14-10, 3-9) this season, Banham scored 92 points.
“I just had it in my head that I wanted to win this game,” Banham said.