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Wisconsin’s second-half run falls short in 70-65 loss to Baylor

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Some signs of life, but the Badgers couldn’t put it together.

NCAA Basketball: Hall of Fame Classic-Baylor at Wisconsin Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

The No. 22 Baylor Bears controlled much of the game against the Wisconsin Badgers on Monday night, but Greg Gard’s team made it close.

Though Wisconsin fought back from as much as 19 points down, it could not overcome Baylor in its 70-65 loss in Kansas City in the 2017 Hall of Fame Classic.

Manu Lecomte scored a game-high 23 points while Jo Lual-Acuil registered a career-high 19 points with 10 rebounds for Baylor (4-0).

Forward Ethan Happ recorded his third double-double in four games for Wisconsin (2-2), as he notched 23 points and 13 rebounds. True freshman guard Brad Davison scored 13 points with three assists before fouling out, with forward Khalil Iverson tallying seven points and rebounds each.

The Badgers actually shot better from the field (39.7 percent to the Bears with 39.6), but were out-rebounded 39-32.

At the half, Baylor led Wisconsin 38-26 with the Bears shooting 56 percent (14 of 25) from the field, six of 10 from three-point range. The Badgers, on the other hand, shot only 41 percent (10 of 24) and was out rebounded 16 to 11.

Lual-Acuil, Jr. scored 16 points and grabbed eight rebounds in the first 20 minutes, while T.J. Mauston and Lecomnte each scored nine points.

Happ scored 10 points with three rebounds and two assists in 11 first-half minutes.

NCAA Basketball: Hall of Fame Classic-Baylor at Wisconsin Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

The night almost took a turn for the worse when Davison left the game with what appeared to be a left shoulder injury. He returned to the game and became a spark, hitting a couple of three-point shots and two free throws, and with a free throw by Khalil Iverson and a basket by Happ, helped bring the game within a 56-49 Baylor lead.

After the game, UW reportedly notes Davison as “day-to-day” with an upper-body injury.

The Badgers brought it within four with less than four minutes left in the game, with Happ’s basket bringing it within two at 57-55 with 2:15 remaining in the game.

That was helped by the fact Baylor only shot seven of 28 from the field (25 percent) in the second half.

Lecomnte then hit five free throws to make it a seven-point lead before forward Aleem Ford’s three-pointer cut it to 62-58 with 54 seconds left.

Ford scored 10 points and grabbed three rebounds in 23 minutes.

That would be the closest Wisconsin would get in that final minute, with Baylor then converting on eight of 10 free throw attempts in the final 49 seconds.

UW will face UCLA on Tuesday night in the third-place/consolation game of the 2017 Hall of Fame Classic.