UW surrenders season-high 70 points on 1.19 points per possession
By hounding Jordan Taylor on defense and pushing the tempo on offense, the shifty Purdue point guard led No. 11 Purdue (21-5, 10-3 Big Ten) to a 70-62 win over No. 10 Wisconsin (19-6, 9-4) in West Lafayette, Ind. With the loss, the Badgers fell to 2-37 all-time in Mackey Arena, while the Boilermakers grabbed sole possession of second place in the Big Ten.
Jackson scored 18 points on 6-of-9 shooting with five assists and no turnovers. Taylor, meanwhile, was held to only six points on 2-of-5 from the field until he sank his last four shots during the game's final seven minutes.
"I felt like could have done more and maybe started penetrating earlier than I did," Taylor admitted to the media afterward.
Containing Taylor was not the only ingredient to the Boilers' success. They also played superb defense throughout the night, holding the Badgers to 3-of-19 (15.8%) shooting behind the arc. It all started with Jackson, who is generously listed at 5'9". His aggressive allowed Taylor little room to take over the game. In fact, Taylor took just one 3-pointer on the night. Wisconsin did not get production from their secondary scoring options either. Keaton Nankivil, Josh Gasser and Mike Bruesewitz combined to go 1-of-11 from long distance after hitting 6-of-11 against Ohio State.
The Badgers cut a 13-point Purdue lead down to two on a pair of Ryan Evans free throws with 3:55 remaining, but E`Twaun Moore responded with the next five points to secure a 63-56 edge. Moore scored 19 points for the Boilers, including a thunderous tomahawk dunk off a Jackson-led fast break that energized the crowd.
Evans finished with 11 points and six rebounds in a nice 28-minute effort for UW.
In the end, this was simply a game where the ball did not bounce UW's way. Taylor missed two layups. Balls slipped out of players' hands. A couple questionable calls went against Wisconsin. Purdue forced six first-half turnovers by knocking balls loose. Then again, this is old news when the Badgers visit Mackey Arena.
Despite winning the battle of the boards, 38-30, Wisconsin failed to convert on a number of bunnies, including a frustrating sequence before halftime where three consecutive offensive rebounds resulted in no points. Sadly, senior Jon Leuer could only watch from the bench after picking up his second foul with 7:42 left in the half.
In the midst of a fantastic first half where he scored eight points in the first 12 minutes, Leuer exited the game with Wisconsin trailing 18-17 and sat until halftime. That was the only way Purdue stopped Leuer all night. The Boilers took advantage and held a 31-25 lead at the break. Leuer's dominance continued in the second half, though he did not score in the final nine minutes. He finished with a game-high 23 points but his running mate, Taylor, was unable to get going in time.
What will really be frustrating for Bo Ryan on film will be UW's three shot-clock violations. Wisconsin could only muster airballed 3-pointers by Taylor and Jared Berggren on two of those possessions, and JaJuan Johnson swatted Gasser on the third.
Johnson was a destructive force inside in addition to leading Purdue with 20 points and 10 rebounds. The lanky senior blocked four key shots and collected two steals, adding to Wisconsin's woes converting on the interior.