Top 25 roundup: Wisconsin beats Michigan

Wisconsin beats No. 2 Michigan

MADISON, Wis. — Ethan Happ and the Wisconsin Badgers finally closed out a tight game. Against No. 2 Michigan, too.

Happ had 26 points and 10 rebounds as Wisconsin handed the Wolverines their first loss of the season, breaking away in the final minute for a 64-54 victory Saturday.

Fans rushed the floor after the Badgers (12-6, 4-3 Big Ten) finished off the upset. The victory came after Wisconsin dropped back-to-back games that came down to the stretch.

“This group’s mentality, even with the struggles we’ve had, has always been a fighter’s mentality,” Badgers coach Greg Gard said.

Wisconsin briefly took the lead Monday night over Maryland after trailing by as many as 21 points in the second half on the road, only to see the game slip away in the final seconds. Likewise, the Badgers took Purdue to overtime Jan. 11 at home before struggling down the stretch with turnovers.

But against Michigan (17-1, 6-1), it all came together for them.

The Wolverines closed within 57-54 on Isaiah Livers’ 3-pointer with just under a minute to play. Michigan put on a full-court press that the Badgers broke, and Ignas Brazdeikis was whistled for a flagrant foul on Happ, who was across the court from the ball.

Elsewhere:

West Virginia 65, No. 7 Kansas 64: Jermaine Haley hurried up the court and hit a layup with 8.5 seconds left, completing a late rally that lifted West Virginia over No. 7 Kansas.

West Virginia (9-9, 1-5 Big 12) scored the final seven points to break a five-game losing streak.

Dedric Lawson and Marcus Garrett made layups 29 seconds apart to give the Jayhawks (15-3, 4-2) their largest lead at 64-58 with 2:34 left. But Kansas didn’t score again.

Wes Harris responded with a 3-pointer for West Virginia and Derek Culver’s layup cut the deficit to 64-63 with 1:26 remaining. Culver then grabbed a rebound, but threw the ball straight to Garrett with 54 seconds left.

West Virginia got another chance after Lagerald Vick’s airball. Haley rushed, drove past Quentin Grimes and made the go-ahead layup.

Vick missed a 3-point try from the corner as time ran out, and West Virginia fans stormed the court after the Mountaineers’ fifth win over the Jayhawks in their last six meetings in Morgantown.

No. 3 Tennessee 71, Alabama 68: Tennessee did its part with a walk-off win of sorts against Alabama.

Enough for a No. 1 ranking? All the Volunteers can do now is sit and wait.

Grant Williams scored 21 points, Alabama was called for traveling with 3.2 seconds left and No. 3 Tennessee rallied past the Crimson Tide for its 12th straight victory and a chance to climb atop the AP Top 25 .

After No. 1 Duke lost to Syracuse on Monday and No. 2 Michigan fell at Wisconsin on Saturday, the Volunteers (16-1, 5-0 Southeastern Conference) could lead the poll Monday for the first time since 2008. The No. 1 spot likely will go to either Tennessee or the winner of Saturday’s game between Duke and No. 4 Virginia.

No. 12 Kentucky 82, No. 14 Auburn 80: Tyler Herro made two free throws with 24 seconds left and Immanuel Quickley added another to help No. 12 Kentucky survive a big rally from No. 12 Auburn.

The Wildcats (14-3, 4-1 Southeastern Conference) rebounded after losing a 17-point second-half lead to finish off a showdown between two of the league’s top teams.

Auburn (13-4, 2-2) took an 80-79 lead on Jared Harper’s contested 3-pointer over Ashton Hagans with 32 seconds left. Herro grabbed the lead back from the line, then Harper held onto the ball for what he hoped would be a game-winner.

No. 9 Virginia Tech 87, Wake Forest 71: Nickeil Alexander-Walker scored 24 points and No. 9 Virginia Tech used a 14-4 first-half run to pull away from Wake Forest.

Ty Outlaw added 14 points and Ahmed Hill 12 for the Hokies (15-2, 4-1 Atlantic Coast Conference). Outlaw, Hill and Justin Robinson each made a 3-pointer during the burst, which turned a 17-all tie into a 31-21 lead with 4 Ç minutes left in the half. The Demon Deacons didn’t get closer than eight the rest of the way.

No. 17 NC State 77, Notre Dame 73: No. 17 North Carolina State left coach Kevin Keatts with a hoarse voice Saturday.

A strong finish against the pesky Fighting Irish was the only medicine Keatts needed. C.J. Bryce hit key free throws en route to 23 points, and the Wolfpack withstood several second-half challenges from Notre Dame.

Purdue 70, No. 25 Indiana 55: Nojel Eastern delivered at both ends of the court, much to the delight of the Purdue fans at Mackey Arena.

Eastern had 10 points, 10 rebounds and stopped star freshman guard Romeo Langford, leading the Boilermakers past No. 25 Indiana. Carsen Edwards scored 20 points as the Boilermakers (12-6, 5-2 Big Ten) beat their in-state rivals for the fourth straight time.

No. 18 Mississippi 84, Arkansas 67: D.C. Davis played a grand total of 16 minutes last season, yet there he was on Saturday, leading a fast break opportunity during a crucial portion of the second half in a key conference game.

The former walk-on spied Terence Davis streaking toward the rim and let a high pass fly. It was perfectly placed and Davis grabbed it in midair, slammed it home and the 18th-ranked Rebels were well on their way to a victory over Arkansas at The Pavilion.

No. 13 North Carolina 85, Miami 76: With 6¢ minutes left and North Carolina clinging to a one-point lead, 6-foot-9 Cameron Johnson took aim from long range over 5-foot-7 Chris Lykes.

Swish. The next trip down the court, Johnson shot over Lykes again. Swish. Johnson’s back-to-back 3-pointers gave the No. 13-ranked Tar Heels the breathing room they needed, and they outlasted outmanned Miami.

The Associated Press

COMMENTS