Quantcast 2011 Wisconsin Badgers Basketball: Wisconsin vs Purdue

2011 Wisconsin Badgers Basketball

 
Big Ten football fans

Wisconsin Badgers vs Purdue Boilermakers Basketball Recap

Wisconsin 66, Purdue 59



They trailed by seven points midway through the second half.

Their shooting lagged for most of the evening. 

One of their core starters didn’t make his first basket of the game until the 8:25 mark of regulation time.

None of it mattered: The Wisconsin Badgers once again defended their home court and reaffirmed themselves as an upper-tier team in the Big Ten for yet another season. 

The more things change, and the more the blizzards sweep through the Midwest, the more things stay the same: Wisconsin wins at the Kohl Center in Madison, Wisconsin, and prevents a two-game losing streak from occurring.

Wisconsin Badgers  Apparel There’s something relentlessly consistent and soothingly dependable about coach Bo Ryan’s Badgers. You can land punches against the young men from Madison, but they never stay on the ropes for very long. The Purdue Boilermakers once again witnessed Wisconsin’s trademark resilience on Tuesday night, as the Badgers moved within half a game of the Boilers for second place in the league. It was all the product of Wisconsin somehow finding a way to play through difficulties and find enough points to outlast Purdue in a classic Big Ten grinder.

Things didn’t start favorably for Wisconsin, and they didn’t evolve very auspiciously in the second half, either, but the Badgers just played through adversity as they always have under Ryan, their hard-as-nails head coach who just keeps pushing ahead. Whenever Wisconsin met a roadblock on a night when many thru-ways were closed throughout a blizzard-hit region, the Badgers found a different route to the winner’s circle… that’s how they’ve won 148 games and lost only 11 in the decade they’ve played at the Kohl Center. It’s also why they now own a 15-game winning streak inside their magical arena, which wasn’t filled to capacity because of the February snowstorm that is ravaging a large swath of the country.

 

Find a great selection ofWisconsin apparel & hats online through Big Ten Fans!

 

The bad start for Wisconsin was simple: a 1-of-7 beginning from the field. No problem – Wisconsin played better defense and forced 10 first-half turnovers from coach Matt Painter’s Purdue squad. At the intermission, the Badgers led by a 27-19 count. Purdue came out firing in the second half, though: JaJuan Johnson (23 points) and E’Twaun Moore (15) helped the Boilers steamroll to a 46-39 advantage with 11:37 to go. Wisconsin hadn’t gotten a single point from forward Keaton Nankivil at the time, and with no one other than Jon Leuer (24 points and 13 boards) stepping up for the home team, Purdue began to believe that it would solve the Kohl Center riddle.

Not so fast. Wisconsin found answers, just as it always does in Madison. Nankivil hit his first basket with 8:25 left, and he quickly followed that score with a 3-pointer to give the Badgers a 52-51 lead to send the crowd into hysterics. Nankivil’s revival set up a dramatic finish, as Purdue carried a 59-58 edge into the final two minutes.

It was then that Wisconsin decided to retain ownership of its own house. Unheralded sophomore guard Ryan Evans, who hadn’t scored in double figures since November 20 against UNLV and had not scored more than two points in any Big Ten game this season, threw down a tough jumper with 51 seconds left to give Wisconsin a 60-59 lead. Evans finished with 10 points and was the number one X-factor on Ryan’s roster. Johnson missed for Purdue at the other end of the floor, and after four Badger foul shots on subsequent exchanges of possession, the matter was sealed.

Neither snow nor rain nor sleet nor dark of night will keep the Wisconsin Badgers from their appointed rounds… and victories… at the Kohl Center. It’s as much a fact of life as anything else in the world of Big Ten basketball.

 

 

By Matthew Zemek
BigTen-fans.com Staff Writer

 

 

> Find more Big Ten football news online at Big Ten Fans!