No. 8 Buckeyes Fall 63-60 in Home Finale to No. 16 Wisconsin
Feb. 26, 2012
COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - Jared Berggren scored Wisconsin's final five points - including a go-ahead 3-pointer with 31 seconds left - and the 16th-ranked Badgers beat No. 8 Ohio State 63-60 on Sunday.
Jordan Taylor had 19 points and Ryan Evans 10 for the Badgers (21-8, 10-6 Big Ten), who made up for an earlier loss at home to the Buckeyes.
With Ohio State (23-6, 11-5) up by a point, Berggren swished a shot from beyond the arc on the left wing. When the Buckeyes called timeout to set up a play, the Badgers and a small contingent of fans celebrated.
The loss gave Michigan State a share of the Big Ten title.
The Badgers improved to 6-3 in Big Ten road games and 9-4 overall away from Kohl Center. Since Bo Ryan took over as head coach, Wisconsin has the most road wins and best road winning percentage among all Big Ten teams (62-60, .508).
Still, they had lost their last two road games and appeared to be in danger of stretching that skid until Berggren's late shots.
Ohio State broke free from a halftime stalemate to build a small lead midway through the second half.
Trailing 42-41, Jared Sullinger - averaging more than 17 points a game but limited to just eight by the Badgers' stifling defense - retrieved his own miss and put it back in.
Craft then forced a turnover by Taylor and Buford hit a finger roll in transition and was fouled for a three-point play. Evans then missed a jumper under pressure and Buford was fouled by Mike Bruesewitz, his fourth. Buford hit both shots.
Rob Wilson misfired on a 3 for the Badgers and Craft made a fallaway 12-foot jumper in the lane to expand the lead to 50-42 with 8:14 remaining.
But the Badgers weren't going away.
Berggren's 3 bounced high off the iron before falling through and Taylor got open for another 3. After a Buford miss, an odd sequence pulled the Badgers within a point. Berggren missed a 3 and Evans grabbed the rebound, tossing a pass as he was going out of bounds that was deflected by an Ohio State player to Gasser for a bank shot to pull Wisconsin to 51-50 with 4:27 left.
Taylor and Craft traded buckets before Craft fouled Taylor late in the shot clock and he hit both shots with 2:53 left to put Wisconsin on top 54-53.
Sullinger muscled in a spinning shot from the block over Berggren with 46 seconds left. But Berggren popped out and hit a wide-open 3 with 31 seconds remaining for a 61-59 lead.
After a timeout, Ohio State settled for a Thomas jumper from the top of the key but Evans closed fast in defending the shot and caused him to double clutch it. Berggren grabbed the rebound after the ball kicked off the back of the iron and was fouled. He hit both free throws with 14.2 seconds left to push the lead to four.
Craft hit a late free throw to close the scoring.
The Badgers played their usual gritty defense - they came in leading the nation in points allowed at just 51.7 per game. But they also had just seven turnovers and held their own on the boards.
The teams were deadlocked at 29 after a strange opening 20 minutes in which the Buckeyes shot over 70 percent most of the way - they missed their last six shots from the field to finish at 55 percent - yet could not pull away. The biggest culprit was their own mistakes with the ball. They had 10 turnovers, twice as many as the Badgers, who shot 39 percent.
The turnover total matched their highest in a half all season. The first time occurred during a 74-71 loss at Indiana on Dec. 31.
In their 58-52 loss at home to Ohio State on Feb. 4, the Badgers were just 5 of 27 on 3-pointers. But in the rematch they were 8 of 21 - including the pivotal shot of the game.
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