Wisconsin Ends Losing Streak; Beats Illini 78-69

Champagne, I.L. ~ The Wisconsin Badgers continuously beat the Illinois Fighting Illini, even in one of the most disappointing seasons in recent memory.

Two of the Badgers three Big 10 wins have come against Illinois and have swept them for the sixth straight season.

Ethan Happ, a junior center, scored 27 points to go along with 8 assists and Wisconsin beat the Illini 78-69. Riding, a five game losing streak, the Badgers came to the State Farm Center in Champagne Illinois ready to play. Wisconsin’s sandwiched their losing streak in between their two victories over Illinois.

After losing some close and tough games to other Big 10 foes, the Badgers got their first win since January 19th.

“Satisfaction.”, Happ replied when asked about how the guys feel on the win. “Just because we’ve been in so many games and lost some tough ones. This wasn’t an easy one by any means. It was down to the wire and we had some guys make some big shots.”

Happ must have been pretty satisfied with himself too, as he made his first seven shots of the game en route to helping the Badgers outscore Illinois 32-16 in the paint. Happ had a career high eight assists to add to his 27 point cause, and he had 5 assists on Wisconsin three pointers.

Guards Brevin Pritzl and Brad Davison, a sophomore and a freshman, added 29 combined points.

Pritzl really snapped out of his funk last night after getting benched in the second half against Maryland last Sunday. He contributed with six rebounds, six assists, and two steals coming off of the bench. After missing a whopping 16 consecutive shots over the course of four straight games, Head Coach Greg Gard told him to keep shooting the ball and eventually things would turn his way. They finally turned his way yesterday when he went 3-for-3 from beyond the arc.

Wisconsin needed all the points they could get, as Illinois freshman guard Trent Frazier scored 32 pints to lead the Illini, 22 of them in the 1st Half. Leron Black, a forward, accompanied Frazier with 13 points and 11 rebounds.

Wisconsin had an 10 point lead with just under 5 minutes to go, but Illinois didn’t give up and all of a sudden, due to a few lucky jump shots, the Illini only trailed by four points.

But Pritzl knocked down some four clutch free throws and the Wisconsin Badgers snapped their 5-game losing streak.


By Jacob Szczap 


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