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Gophers slip past Badgers, 59-52

Minnesota wins in Madison.

Posted: Jan 4, 2019 7:20 AM

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — Minnesota coach Richard Pitino dared No. 22 Wisconsin to beat the Golden Gophers from the 3-point arc and the free throw line.

The Badgers weren't up to the challenge.

Amir Coffey scored 21 points and Minnesota put Wisconsin in an early hole before holding off a furious rally to win 59-52 on Thursday night. The Gophers (12-2, 2-1 Big Ten) ended an eight-game losing streak in the rivalry with their first victory at Wisconsin since 2009.

Minnesota held the Badgers to 14 percent shooting from 3-point range in the first half while building a double-digit lead. The Gophers then hung on as Wisconsin missed late opportunities at the foul line.

Pitino said a key part of his strategy was double-teaming Wisconsin leading scorer Ethan Happ in the post and then intentionally fouling him late.

Happ led the Badgers with 17 points on 8-of-13 shooting from the field, but he was just 1 for 7 at the line. And the Badgers, who came in shooting 39.1 percent from 3-point territory, second-best in the Big Ten, went only 5 of 22 in this one.

"He's such a unique, terrific player," Pitino said of Happ, who came in shooting 52 percent from the foul line. "You have to do something or he's going to torch you."

Coffey scored 15 straight Minnesota points in the first half as the Gophers opened a 29-14 lead at the break. He also made a key shot to end the final threat from Wisconsin (10-4, 2-1).

The Badgers still had a chance late even as they failed to convert free throws. That included a stretch of going 3 of 10 in the second half after cutting the deficit to seven with just more than eight minutes to go. Happ started the woes at the foul line by missing the front end on consecutive 1-and-1 situations, and the Badgers finished 7 of 17 after coming in shooting 69 percent as a team.

Happ's steal and dunk coupled with D'Mitrik Trice's floater, however, trimmed the margin to 49-47 with two minutes left.

But then Coffey hit a runner and Dupree McBrayer turned steals on back-to-back possessions into points as Minnesota pushed the lead back to eight.

It marked an uncharacteristic lack of discipline with the ball for the Badgers, who entered third in the NCAA with an average of just nine turnovers per game. They also set a season low for points in the first half as they shot only 23 percent from the field over the first 20 minutes.

"There's not making shots, and there's what we had in the first half," coach Greg Gard said. "That's a whole other level."

WINTER BREAKS

It was the second sports streak Minnesota halted this season against its archrival. The football team snapped a 13-game skid against the Badgers in November, also beating Wisconsin on the road.

OH, REALLY?

Wisconsin guard Brad Davison was called for a technical foul in the first half after he missed a layup while taking heavy contact. No foul was called and he slapped the floor with both hands after hitting the deck. It was Davison's second foul in the first half, and Coffey converted one of the two ensuing free throws. Gard said he was told Davison slapping the floor was considered an unsportsmanlike gesture, though the coach sounded dubious about the explanation. "I don't know. I'll have to do some research to find that one in the rule book," he said.

BIG PICTURE

Minnesota: Notched its first quality road win of the season.

Wisconsin: Unable to bounce back at home after losing 83-76 to Western Kentucky on the road last week.

UP NEXT

Minnesota: Hosts Maryland on Tuesday.

Wisconsin: Plays at Penn State on Sunday.

Minnesota Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 589527

Reported Deaths: 7333
CountyCasesDeaths
Hennepin1221311726
Ramsey51028871
Dakota45667448
Anoka41421437
Washington26724281
Stearns22139221
St. Louis17682302
Scott17201124
Wright15943139
Olmsted1319098
Sherburne1160286
Carver1044945
Clay812792
Rice8014106
Blue Earth746141
Crow Wing660988
Kandiyohi652083
Chisago592551
Otter Tail572978
Benton565997
Goodhue475772
Douglas464674
Mower464032
Winona452950
Itasca432254
McLeod421658
Isanti417364
Morrison417360
Nobles407248
Beltrami392458
Steele384915
Polk382468
Becker378850
Lyon359850
Carlton344153
Freeborn341129
Pine326722
Nicollet323843
Brown304640
Mille Lacs302452
Le Sueur289222
Todd280632
Cass269628
Meeker254340
Waseca236522
Martin229831
Roseau207919
Wabasha20483
Hubbard187141
Dodge18373
Renville178943
Redwood172936
Houston171515
Cottonwood164321
Fillmore155510
Wadena155122
Pennington153619
Chippewa151838
Faribault151319
Kanabec143424
Sibley142510
Aitkin134236
Watonwan13219
Rock128019
Jackson121711
Pipestone115126
Yellow Medicine113820
Pope10956
Murray10609
Swift104918
Stevens90211
Marshall88017
Clearwater86416
Koochiching81715
Lake80819
Wilkin80712
Lac qui Parle75022
Big Stone5984
Lincoln5773
Grant5678
Mahnomen5459
Norman5399
Unassigned48793
Kittson48522
Red Lake3957
Traverse3685
Lake of the Woods3223
Cook1610

Iowa Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 366197

Reported Deaths: 5929
CountyCasesDeaths
Polk57488623
Linn20814334
Scott19960240
Black Hawk15785308
Woodbury15121228
Johnson1445783
Dubuque13355209
Dallas1116198
Pottawattamie11091168
Story1059248
Warren575888
Clinton554393
Cerro Gordo538089
Sioux513874
Webster512193
Marshall482175
Muscatine477499
Des Moines454366
Wapello4297122
Buena Vista424540
Jasper418672
Plymouth400680
Lee375055
Marion361775
Jones298157
Henry291137
Carroll285452
Bremer283960
Crawford265840
Boone263934
Benton256055
Washington253950
Dickinson247843
Mahaska229951
Jackson221242
Clay215325
Kossuth215264
Delaware209240
Tama209271
Winneshiek196934
Page192622
Buchanan190731
Cedar189423
Hardin184943
Fayette184841
Wright184336
Hamilton179449
Harrison179373
Clayton169256
Butler164634
Mills161722
Madison161519
Floyd160342
Cherokee158738
Lyon157741
Poweshiek154733
Allamakee151151
Iowa148324
Hancock147634
Winnebago141731
Calhoun138113
Cass137954
Grundy136233
Emmet134040
Jefferson132435
Shelby130737
Sac130119
Union128133
Appanoose128049
Louisa127849
Mitchell126042
Chickasaw123915
Guthrie121030
Franklin119321
Humboldt118826
Palo Alto112523
Howard104522
Montgomery103338
Clarke99924
Unassigned9770
Keokuk95631
Monroe95129
Ida90334
Adair86432
Pocahontas85322
Davis82824
Monona82830
Osceola78516
Greene77610
Lucas77123
Worth7438
Taylor65712
Fremont6229
Decatur6089
Van Buren55618
Ringgold55524
Wayne53723
Audubon50810
Adams3384
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