After some tough stretches inside Pinnacle Bank Arena on Tuesday night, this season’s Wisconsin Badgers again showed the resiliency and the ability to bounce back in its 62-51 victory over the Nebraska Cornhuskers.
In a key stretch, sophomore guard Brad Davison scored 10 of his team-high 13 points in the second half while also pulling down four rebounds and dishing out four assists.
Redshirt senior forward Ethan Happ nearly tallied a double-double in the road win, recording 10 points, nine rebounds and four assists. Though in early foul trouble, sophomore forward Nate Reuvers also contributed 10 points in 18 minutes.
D’Mitrik Trice, Brevin Pritzl and Khalil Iverson all registered eight points, with Iverson also pulling down six rebounds.
Winning its fourth straight game, Wisconsin (15-6, 7-3 Big Ten) shot 43.6 percent from the field and made only nine of 23 three-pointers (39.1 percent).
Again showing their defensive prowess, the Badgers held the Huskers to just 28.3 percent overall and only 20 percent from three on their own home court.
Junior forward Isaiah Roby scored a game-high 18 points with nine rebounds for Nebraska (13-8, 3-7), while senior guard James Palmer Jr recorded 14 points and three rebounds. Fellow senior guard Glynn Watson Jr. only tallied five points and six rebounds, and the trio combined to make 12 of 42 shots, four of 14 from three-point range. Palmer only connected on one of seven from deep.
Wisconsin led 28-21 at halftime after a first 20 minutes where both teams struggled for periods.
UW shot 40.7 percent (11-of-27) from the field, including just 30.8 percent (four of 13) from three-point range. On the flip side, Nebraska connected on just seven of 23 attempts (23.3 percent), only one of eight from deep.
Down 8-7 after a Palmer layup, Wisconsin went on a 14-0 run in a 5:12 spree to take a commanding 21-8 lead. The Badgers held the Huskers scoreless for a 6:03 span in that first half, with Nebraska not connecting on a field goal for almost eight minutes.
Greg Gard’s squad then went cold itself towards the end of the first half. After Iverson’s layup to put Wisconsin ahead 23-9 at the 7:17 mark, Nebraska ended the half on a 12-5 run. A Palmer free throw cut the UW lead down to four points with 1:20 remaining in the half before Pritzl’s three with 58 seconds remaining gave the Badgers a hint more breathing room heading into intermission.
Nebraska whittled the Wisconsin lead down to start the second half. After Happ’s layup gave UW a six-point lead at 32-26 with 17:55 remaining, the Huskers pulled off a 9-0 run to give themselves a 35-32 lead at the 15:13 mark.
Trice’s three-pointer tied the game back up at 35-35, but Nebraska would take the lead two different times in the next minutes thereafter. Senior forward Charles Thomas answered, however, with five points to help Wisconsin keep it within a one-possession game.
Thomas also grabbed three rebounds and blocked a shot in his six minutes of play, but his three-pointer at the 11:31 mark tied it at 40-40. That—combined with a second Pritzl three-pointer and Iverson dunk—was part of a larger 8-0 run to help the Badgers regain a lead they would not relinquish for the rest of the game.
In the last 11:31 of the contest, the Badgers outscored the Huskers 25-11 to ultimately pull off the win, with Nebraska scoring those 11 points in the final 8:35 of the contest.
With Tim Miles’ squad shrinking the UW advantage to 45-42 after a Watson Jr. layup at that 8:35 mark, Davison scored the next 10 points for Wisconsin. He went on a personal 7-0 run against the Huskers that included drawing a fifth foul on senior forward Tanner Borchardt in a vital late stretch of the game.
For the second half overall, UW shot 13-of-28 (46.4 percent)—5-of-10 from three-point range. Nebraska fared better in the final 20 minutes than its first half shooting, but only made 10 of 30 (33.3 percent) of its attempts.
Reuvers’ three-pointer at the 2:17 mark gave Wisconsin a 12-point lead, essentially putting the nail in the coffin for Nebraska’s chances to come back.
UW hopes to make it five in a row on Friday night when it hosts Maryland at the Kohl Center (8 p.m. CT, FS1).