Ethan Happ Can't Save No.12 Wisconsin In 74-69 OT Loss At Marquette

Ethan Happ Can't Save No.12 Wisconsin In 74-69 OT Loss At Marquette

Basketball

Ethan Happ Can't Save No.12 Wisconsin In 74-69 OT Loss At Marquette

MILWAUKEE – The I-94 rivalry gave a capacity crowd the first overtime game in the series since 1989. That was just enough time for Marquette to bury the Badgers.

Despite shooting just 35.4 percent, the Golden Eagles turned in up a notch in extra five minutes to register a 74-69 victory over No.12 Wisconsin at Fiserv Forum in a game that featured 13 lead changes and 10 times.

Junior Markus Howard scored 27 points on 7-for-29 shooting while Sam and Joey Hauser combined for 28 points for Marquette (8-2), which beat the Badgers at home for the first time since 2012.

Averaging 13.3 points in three previous games against Marquette, Ethan Happ did all he could to lift Wisconsin (8-2) by with a career-high 34 points on 16-for-21 shooting, but his teammate struggled to help him.

Nate Reuvers and D’Mitrik Trice were UW’s next two highest scorers with 11 and 10 points, respectively, but the duo also went 3-for-13 from 3-point range. It wasn’t just them, as UW shot an ugly 5-for-23 behind the arc.

The poor shooting bled into the free throw line, too. A 70.1 percent shooting team entering the afternoon, Wisconsin went a season-worst 10-for-21 from the line. Even Brad Davison, a 90.5 percent shooter, missed all his free throws over the final six minutes of the second half.

After each team traded buckets on their opening possessions of overtime, the Golden Eagles’ 6-2 run opened the gap. The biggest bucket came from Nebraska transfer Ed Morrow, who grabbed an offensive rebound around four Badgers and banked it in high off the glass, pushing the lead to 69-65 with 2:07 remaining.

UW had a chance to tie with 1:25 remaining but Reuvers missed his fifth 3-pointer and the Badgers never got within one possession again after missing four of their final five shots.

Marquette appeared poised to end the game in regulation after Theo John’s post bucket with 5:56 remaining in the second half. UW was in the midst of a 4:45 scoring drought during seven empty possessions, the last four ending in contested 3-pointers and two Davison missed free throws.

But an old-fashioned 3-point play by Happ got Wisconsin moving again, but consecutive possessions with missed free throws opened the door for Joey Hauser to his a 3-pointer from the corner, putting Marquette back in front at 59-57 with 3:25 remaining.

Limiting to only eight shooting attempts, Trice tied the game with a pair of free throws with 2:58 remaining but neither team corralled momentum with the lead teetering back and forth during a five-possession stretch.

The final minute delivered no scoring but the same kind of agony. Howard missed a deep 3-pointer that opened the door for Wisconsin, but Morrow’s block of Happ at the rim on the other end could have been huge after Trice – expecting Happ to be looking for the ball on a back cut – threw the ball into first row of seats following the inbounds.

Able to hold for the last shot, Howard dribbled into the lane for a pull-up jumper and teased the bottom of the net but fell harmlessly to the hardwood.

Ranking fourth in the NCAA with just 8.8 turnovers per game, Wisconsin turned the ball over five times in its first nine possessions, including four on its first five. When the Badgers settled down, however, they gave the Golden Eagles fits.

Committing only two turnover the rest of the half, the Badgers shot 53.8 percent for the half, getting low post pop from Happ (12 points) and a pair of big 3-point hits at the top of the key from Aleem Ford. It also helped that UW frustrate Howard.

Howard scored 15 points during two distinct stretches, scoring seven points in the first 6:12 and eight over the final 3:04.  In between, UW held Marquette to only five field goals in the final 10:30, resulting in a 35.5 percent overall shooting percentage (11-for-31) and 33.3 percent from 2-point range (7-for-21).

Wisconsin returns to action Thursday hosting Savannah State at the Kohl Center.

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