The Wisconsin Badgers Basketball team defeated the Michigan Wolverines by a score of 73-61 in their last game of 2008. The Badgers win was the perfect way to look forward to 2009 and the rest of the Big Ten slate, as the Badgers got a huge road win and beat a ranked opponent for the first time this year. Of course the Badgers played ranked teams Marquette and Texas tough and got blown out by U-Conn after not being able to beat a full court press to save their lives.
The upstart Michigan Wolverines had won 5 games in a row heading into today's contest and were ranked number 24 in the USA Today Poll and number 23 in the AP. Michigan has earned their current ranking as they have gotten huge wins over Duke and UCLA, so there can be no saying they had not been tested. This also should look like a good win for the Badgers come tournament seeding time as you should look for the Wolverines to hang tough all season in the Big Ten. Deshawn Simms and Manny Harris have been keeping the Wolverines going this year, but against the Badgers freshman Zack Novak also contributed a career high 20 points.
The Badgers victory against the Wolverines was keyed by good shooting and good defense, and closing out the foul shooting at the end. That sounds like textbook quality basketball from a young team that has not clicked on all cylinders this year. The Badgers in particular got off to a good start in the game making nine of ten shots to start out, and then holding Michigan scoreless for a prolonged stretch early in the first half.
Marcus Landry and Trevon Hughes led the scoring for the Badgers with 16 each and Jon Leuer added 12. This pattern of scoring leaders is becoming a very noticable trend for this years badgers team. An interesting game stat is freshman Rob Wilson scored 7 points in 7 minutes, and even went 3 for 3 from the line.
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