D'Mitrik Trice's 7 3-pointers Lead No.25 Wisconsin Over Oklahoma, 78-58

D'Mitrik Trice's 7 3-pointers Lead No.25 Wisconsin Over Oklahoma, 78-58

Basketball

D'Mitrik Trice's 7 3-pointers Lead No.25 Wisconsin Over Oklahoma, 78-58

An afternoon after seemingly nothing would fall from the perimeter, the University of Wisconsin watched wave after wave of 3-point shot drop into the net.

And it was no surprise who Wisconsin’s biggest benefactor was.

Sophomore D’Mitrik Trice’s hot-shooting from 3-point range returned, hitting seven of Wisconsin’s 14 perimeter shots to lead the 25th-ranked Badgers to the finals of the Battle 4 Atlantis tournament with an emphatic 78-58 victory over Oklahoma Thursday in Paradise Island, Bahamas.

Setting a new career-high with 25 points, the third time this season he has reset his career high, Trice is now shooting 60.6 percent (20-for-33) from the perimeter this season, a huge leap after shooting 30 percent last season and 41.8 percent the year before.

Kobe King added a career-high 14 points, senior Ethan Happ 14 scored 14 and Nate Reuvers added 12 for UW (5-0), which will play either Dayton or No.4 Virginia in Friday’s championship game (1 p.m./ESPN) after shooting 63.6 percent from 3-point range.

A close two-point affair early in the second half was broken open on a 12-3 run, spurred mostly by two of Wisconsin’s budding young players.

Bulking up 30 pounds in the offseason after being pressed into early duty last season, Reuvers delivered a rebound, a 3-point mark and drew an offensive foul on three straight possessions. Just 3-for-6 from three this season, Reuvers got into the fun by going 3-for-4 from the perimeter.

The last points on the run came from a Trice 3-pointer. After going 0-for-5 in the quarterfinal win over Stanford, Trice was 7-for-8, including a perfect 3-for-3 in the first half that gave him 11 of his points.

Led by 18 points from Christian James, Oklahoma (4-1) never got closer than nine points the rest of the way.

Wisconsin got the early edge based on a couple of opposites from the afternoon before. After scoring 16 points in the win over Stanford, Happ managed a lowly two points in the first half, although he managed to contribute in other ways with seven rebounds and four assists.

When the points finally came for him, Happ finished with another impressive stat line that included 12 rebounds, five assists and a steal.

And after Wisconsin hit a 3-pointer in the final minute Wednesday to avoid going without a 3-point make for the first time in a couple decade, the Badgers hit 6 of 13 in the first half, half of UW’s made field goals. As it turned out, UW was just getting started with a barrage that saw them average 1.24 points per possession.

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