Ducks fall to Wisconsin 85-77 in their 2nd NCAA tourney matchup
MILWAUKEE (AP) Up-tempo Oregon ran into a big red speed bump.
Joseph Young scored 29 points but missed a potential game-tying 3 from the wing with 13 seconds left, and the Ducks watched their 12-point halftime lead crumble in an 85-77 loss Saturday night to gritty Wisconsin.
Ben Brust hit a 3-pointer with 1:07 left for the second-seeded Badgers on a possession saved twice by offensive rebounds. It gave Wisconsin (28-7) the lead for good in a clash of styles played before a boisterous pro-Badgers crowd at the anything-but-neutral Bradley Center.
"The momentum switched there pretty quick. It kind of boiled down to us not getting stops that we needed to, and then with the one-point lead late, the ability to get a big rebound," Oregon coach Dana Altman said.
Traevon Jackson followed Brust's 3 with three free throws, but missed one with 21 seconds left to give the seventh-seeded Ducks (24-10) one more chance to tie trailing by three.
Oregon gave it to Young, who had made big shots all night.
Couldn't make one more, and the Badgers sealed it at the foul line.
"That shot he took, no one questioned it," Oregon's Richard Amardi said about Young. "It looked good. Unfortunately it just didn't go it in when we wanted it."
The red-clad fans erupted into a deafening roar. Their beloved Badgers are back in the NCAA regional semifinals for the first time since 2012. They will play Baylor or Creighton in Anaheim, Calif., on Thursday.
"We knew they were going to come out and be emotional," Altman said. "We just didn't handle it very well. Gave up easy baskets and didn't get the stops we needed at all."
Frank Kaminsky led the way for Wisconsin with 19 points, Jackson finished with 16 and Brust had 12.
Left off-kilter by the Ducks transition game early, the Badgers hustled back in the second half to answer theOregon charge. After 19 points on the break in the first half, Oregon had nothing in transition after halftime.
"Do you know how many fast-break points they got in the second half? Zero," coach Bo Ryan said. "Oregon, one of the quickest teams in the country, so you've got to give the players a heckuva lot of credit."
That pace played more their liking. Buckets in the lane by Kaminsky, a jump-shooting 7-footer, and coach Bo Ryan's gritty guards set the tone inside, and later helped open up the perimeter.
As had often happened during the night, Young had an answer. His 3 from the wing with 2:50 left to giveOregon a 75-74 lead.
The Badgers grabbed offensive rebounds on their next possession. Off a timeout, Ryan re-inserted Brust, who was saddled with four fouls.
The senior delivered in a huge spot with a 3 following an offensive rebound by Sam Dekker. Young couldn't deliver one last time.
"Do whatever it takes to not make it your final game," Brust said.
Jason Calliste had 20 points for Oregon, which set the tone early with in-your-face defense and an aggressive offense.
Wisconsin found its groove by attacking the basket, a plan that has worked all year long when the team has been having problems. Dekker added 12 points and eight rebounds in another typically balanced effort.
In the first half, it was Oregon dictating tempo in setting a breakneck pace.
The Ducks quieted the sea of fans in a hurry, attacking on offense at nearly every opportunity and flustering Wisconsin. The frustration peaked when the Badgers bench was whistled for a technical foul near the end of the first half after arguing a call.
Oregon pounced in the first 20 minutes. Sometimes it was Calliste driving to the bucket to draw fouls. Other times it was Young hitting mid-range jumpers.
Then Wisconsin found its way in the second half.
"To be able to handle that smack in the face in the first half and come back and deliver one of our own says a lot about this group," Ryan said.
Despite the disappointing ending, Oregon had regrouped quite well since a midseason stretch of eight losses in 10 games.
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