Mar 27

Wisconsin wins tight game with North Carolina

Showing the resilience of a No. 1 seed, the Wisconsin Badgers are heading back to the Elite Eight. The Badgers, a Final Four participant a year ago, had to dig deep, rallying in the second half in a game they trailed nearly throughout to knock off No. 4 seed North Carolina 77-73 in Los Angeles in the West Regional. The Badgers survived an off-night from many players, including a brutal start from player of the year candidate Frank Kaminsky, yet received a career-best 23 points & 10 rebounds from Sam Dekker, who was fantastic. Kaminsky rallied from an 0-for-4 start, to hit five of his next seven attempts, as well as all eight of his free throws as the Big Ten champs improved to 34-3 & set up a meeting with the Arizona-Xavier winner. Marcus Paige sprang to life late for the Tar Heels & scored 12 points & Justin Jackson & Brice Johnson added 15 for a team that shot a scorching 8-for-13 (61.5%) from three, yet the Badgers hit 20 free throws (on 87% shooting) to North Carolina’s dismal 12-for-18 work at the line, including two key misses late. It was a classic meeting of two polar opposites — the slow-paced, methodical, yet devastating Wisconsin attack & the frenetic, run-and-gun Tar Heels. Quite the contrast of styles. All of that running didn’t obtain UNC very far though, as the team ranked just 81st in points per possession, while Wisconsin ranked No. …

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