Hoopcap: Wisconsin Outlasts Indiana For Seventh Straight Win
Wisconsin found themselves as one of the things to watch before Super Bowl on Sunday afternoon. They had a chance to sweep Indiana at Kohl Center. Wisconsin did just that in a 40-minute fight with Tom Crean’s boys holding them off by the margin of 65-60. Badgers started quick again, but Indiana would pull the game back to a reasonable amount until the finish. It was a strong win by Badgers, and Hoosiers lose one that could have really helped the resume.
Hayes found his stroke from the line
People are just now talking about how Ethan Happ and Nigel Hayes are not good from the free throw line. They’re shooting around 60 percent. Hayes has been very bad this season compared to last year where he shot 71 percent. Sunday was a good sign that the tide may be turning in his favor. He made seven of eight free throws propelling him to 15 points. If Hayes can get to the line 10 times, and make 7 or 8, Badgers are going to be successful.
Happ handled the extra pressure perfectly
Crean threw a somewhat new wrinkle at Ethan Happ. Indiana crashed down for a double team on almost every play where Happ touched the ball. The Badgers big man did a great job at finding the open man and alluding the pressure. Happ still finished with 20 points despite the constant double-teams in the post. Not sure if it was as successful as they would have wanted.
Indiana always felt like they were punching up
In a five-point game, you think at some point that the losing team has a chance to win this one, and that wasn’t the case with Indiana. They were always a stop or missed shot away from taking control of this game. The closest Hoosiers got in the second half was 35-33 and shortly thereafter Brevin Pritzl lays it up then a turnover and another Wisconsin basket. It speaks to Badgers on both sides of the court.\
Brevin Pritzl is a player to watch down the stretch.
With college basketball, we always should expect to see someone come into the limelight. This time, it’s Brevin Pritzl who gave Wisconsin great minutes off the bench in the second half. Pritzl finished with six points in 12 minutes and found a way to be everywhere on the court. Pritzl is next up for Wisconsin.
Player of the Game: Nigel Hayes (Wisconsin), Josh Newkirk (Indiana)
Next up: Wisconsin heads to Lincoln, Nebraska to face Cornhuskers where it’s always tough to play. They’ve pulled off an upset of Purdue already this season and hope to do the same on Thursday night. Nebraska isn’t a bad team, but it’s a game that Badgers should win.