EVANSTON, Ill. (AP) -- Tyrell Sutton was looking over his shoulder, worried he'd be tackled from behind. It was wasted energy.
The freshman broke a tackle at the line and didn't stop until he reached the end zone 62 yards later with what proved to be the game-winning touchdown in the fourth quarter Saturday as Northwestern beat No. 14 Wisconsin 51-48 and handed the Badgers their first loss.
"I don't like getting tackled by the first guy," said Sutton, who rushed for a season-high 244 yards and three touchdowns on 29 carries. "It gets the defense trying to gang-tackle and that opens other things up."
Northwestern scored on seven straight possessions and finished with a school-record 674 yards of total offense against a Wisconsin defense that had allowed an average of 336.8.
Sutton now has 772 yards rushing, the most by a Northwestern freshman.
Brett Basanez completed 26-of-36 passes for 361 yards and three touchdowns for the Wildcats, coming off a 34-29 loss to Penn State two weeks ago. Tim McGarigle had 25 tackles and two sacks as the Wildcats beat Wisconsin for the third time in four games.
Sutton's 1-yard run in the third quarter put Northwestern (3-2, 1-1 Big Ten) ahead for good, 23-17, and that 62-yarder late in the fourth made it 51-34. From there, the Wildcats hung on.
After recovering a fumble by Sutton near midfield, Wisconsin's John Stocco completed a 21-yard touchdown pass to Jonathan Orr to pull the Badgers (5-1, 2-1) to 51-48 with 2:48 remaining.
After a punt by Northwestern's Ryan Pederson rolled out at the 3 with 1:23 remaining, Wisconsin had a final chance. But on the next play, McPherson intercepted Stocco at the 14.
"I saw the receiver come up [field] and go inside," McPherson said. "Their quarterback looked and I just jumped in and made the play."
Stocco said: "That's a play that ... we haven't really run that much. I thought they'd all be dropping deep and there'd be a big hole over the middle. He made a nice play on it. I tried to keep it low, a safe throw, but he made a play on it."
Wisconsin's Brian Calhoun became the first Wisconsin player with more than 100 yards rushing and receiving in a game, carrying 23 times for 122 and catching 11 passes for 128. Stocco was 24-of-31 for 326 yards with two interceptions and four touchdowns -- all to Orr.
Northwestern's scoring streak started when Joel Howell kicked a 21-yard field goal with four seconds left in the first half and ended when Sutton fumbled with 3:31 left in the game. In between, the Wildcats scored six touchdowns.
"Playing a top-15 football team in the country, not a small achievement," Northwestern coach Randy Walker said of the victory. "But we do have a way of making it interesting. 'Why can't we do this easy?' I kept saying in the fourth quarter."
Although Northwestern scored touchdowns on all four of its possessions in the third quarter, Wisconsin stayed in the game.
Northwestern drove 80 yards for a touchdown on the opening drive of the third quarter. A 45-yard run by Sutton put the ball on the Wisconsin 24. Basanez then had a clear path to the end zone when he tripped at the 4, but he connected with Mark Philmore on the next play to pull to 17-16.
Wisconsin blocked the extra point, but the lead disappeared on Northwestern's next possession. Sutton ran for a 1-yard score, capping a 73-yard drive that put the Wildcats ahead 23-17.
The teams combined for three touchdowns in the final 2:22 of the quarter, starting with Basanez's 52-yard touchdown pass to Kim Thompson that made it 30-20.
Calhoun answered with a 1-yard touchdown run that pulled Wisconsin to within three.
After an 81-yard kickoff return by Gerard Hamlett, Sutton ran it in from the 14 to make it 37-27.
A 9-yard scoring pass from Basanez to Sutton made it 44-34 early in the fourth, and Wisconsin punted on its next possession. The teams had combined to score on seven consecutive drives.
"We were OK at the half," Wisconsin coach Barry Alvarez said, referring to a 17-10 lead. "They didn't have the ball much, and I didn't think there were any major things we had to correct. ... I would have been pleased to play like we did in the first half."
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