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Wisconsin upsets Michigan in Big Ten tournament

Published: Friday, March 15, 2013 4:02 p.m. CDT • Updated: Friday, March 15, 2013 4:03 p.m. CDT
Caption
Michigan's Max Bielfeldt (44) goes after a loose ball with Wisconsin's Jared Berggren (left) and Sam Dekker (15) during the first half of a Big Ten tournament game Friday at the Unite Center. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh)

CHICAGO – Ben Brust scored 11 of his 14 points in the second half and No. 22 Wisconsin knocked off sixth-ranked Michigan, 68-59, in the second round of the Big Ten tournament Friday at the United Center.

Traevon Jackson had 16 points for the Badgers (22-10), who will play top-seeded Indiana in the semifinals on Saturday. Ryan Evans added 12 points, six rebounds and six assist.

Trey Burke had 19 points and seven assists for Michigan (26-7), but the Big Ten player of the year was 8 for 22 from the field. Tim Hardaway Jr. shook off a leg injury in the first half and finished with 14 points and nine boards.

The Wolverines advanced with an 83-66 victory over Penn State on Thursday, setting up a sequel to one of the best games of the season. Wisconsin rallied for a 65-62 victory over Michigan on Feb. 9 when Brust hit a tying 3-pointer from just inside midcourt at the end of regulation, then hit another big 3 with 39 seconds left in overtime.

This one was lacking that sort of drama, but still had a compelling finish.

Wisconsin finally found its shooting stroke in the second half, putting together a 10-0 run to take a 29-24 lead with 15:09 to go. Brust hit a 3-pointer, Jared Berggren converted two layups and Frank Kaminsky capped the run with another 3. Michigan tried to rally, but Wisconsin had an answer each time. And the Badgers had a couple of different players step up at crucial points.

Mike Bruesewitz and Brust each hit a big 3-pointer. Evans wriggled free for a layup and a jumper to extend the lead to 49-42 with 7:56 left. Brust tacked on another 3 from the corner to extend Wisconsin's lead to 11, forcing a Michigan timeout with 6:01 remaining.

The Wolverines then put together a 9-0 run to get within 56-54, but Kaminsky made a pull-up jumper as the final seconds of the shot clock ticked off. Burke then missed inside, Jackson went 1 for 2 at the line to make it a five-point game, and the Badgers closed it out from there.

Bruesewitz, Berggren and Kaminsky had eight points apiece for the Badgers, who went 16 for 21 at the line.

Michigan got a scare midway through the first half when Hardaway went down after a floater in the lane. He grabbed his left leg as he rolled around on the floor, then had to be helped to the locker room. But he returned a couple minutes later, earning a round of applause from the sellout crowd.

The contrasting styles of the high-scoring Wolverines and defensive-minded Badgers were on full display during an ugly first half that featured almost as many turnovers (14) as field goals (15).

Burke helped send a charge through the crowd with a long alley-oop to a streaking Hardaway, who soared in for the dunk with 11:49 to go. Hardaway saluted the crowd as he bounded down the court after the big jam.

But Berggren immediately dunked on the other end for Wisconsin, and the Badgers used their stifling defense to stick around despite an awful shooting display. Jackson hit a 3-pointer with 4 seconds left to trim Michigan's lead to 20-17 at the break.

The halftime statistics were alarming for both sides. The Badgers were 5 for 29 from the field, but the Wolverines were only slightly better at 10 for 29. Michigan missed all five of its foul shots and committed eight turnovers in the first 20 minutes.

___

Jay Cohen can be reached at http://www.twitter.com/jcohenap

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