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Saturday, December 11, 2010

Marquette University vs. Wisconsin mens basketball recap

Ryan Ellerbusch

In the 117th series meeting in program history, the Marquette Golden Eagles came up short against the in-state rival Wisconsin Badgers 69-64 in front of 19,074 fans at the Bradley Center on Saturday afternoon.

Wisconsin head coach Bo Ryan and his very unique style of half-court offense set the tempo early and frustrated Marquette throughout the game as the Badgers were able to slowly capitalize on 21 second-chance points. Wisconsin controlled the glass, grabbing both short and long rebounds with ease.

“We got beat because they got twelve offensive rebounds in the second half.... Because we are small, you got to take up the space between you and your man when the shot goes up and then use your speed and athleticism to chase after the ball,” said Marquette head coach Buzz Williams.

Despite the Badgers' dominance in rebounding the basketball, they were only leading Marquette by two points at halftime. Marquette was looking desperately for someone to step up and assume the role as the go-to-guy on offense.

Jimmy Butler and Dwight Buycks led their team in scoring with 15 and 13 points respectively and nearly staged a comeback in the closing minutes as Butler’s clutch three-pointer brought the Golden Eagles to within striking distance. However, Dwight Buycks’ turnover, with 2.6 seconds left, sealed the deal for the Badgers as Jordan Taylor sunk five of six free-throws with 20 seconds remaining in the game to cap off the victory.

The Badgers (8-2) led by as many as 12 points throughout the course of the game, even with Jon Leuer (a 2011 NBA Draft prospect) on the bench cheering his team on, as the Badgers worked the 35-second shot clock well late in the game and took Marquette out of its typical rhythm and fast break style of play.

Marquette was in bonus the majority of the second-half and slowly crawled their way back into the game going to the free-throw line 22 times and converting 16. However, Wisconsin’s offense and rebounding was just too much, regaining the momentum with crucial baskets down the stretch.

Even though Marquette’s late surge wasn’t enough to defeat Wisconsin, conference play kicks off on New Year’s Day against West Virginia at 10 a.m. Attendance and fan support is rapidly increasing at the Marquette basketball home games, and we encourage you to stop on by and cheer on our Golden Eagles to victory.

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