KANSAS CITY -- No. 5 Wisconsin did almost everything they were supposed to do against No. 12 Ole Miss in the Round of 64. The Badgers got open shots, played great defense, neutralized the Rebels' strong inside game, and shut down their star Marshall Henderson for the most part.
Wisconsin shot just 25.4 percent against Ole Miss.
That one thing they didn't do was make shots. Wisconsin shot an atrocious 25.4 (15-59) percent from the field in a 57-46 loss Ole Miss.
The Badgers went into the half holding a 25-22 lead, shooting just over 30 percent from the field. The Rebels' leading scorer Marshall Henderson (20.0 ppg) was held to two points on 1-11 shooting.
As the game wore on, Wisconsin continued to struggle, but Henderson and Ole Miss did not. The Rebels closed the game on a 27-10 run and Henderson finished with 19 points, as Ole Miss shot 49 percent in the second half, compared to Wisconsin's 22.2 percent.
Freshman Forward Sam Dekker
Dekker led Wisconsin with 14 points. His shots weren't falling at the end when the Badgers needed him, but once again the freshman stepped up in a crucial game.
Senior Forward Mike Bruesewitz
Dekker led Wisconsin with 14 points.
"The Bruiser" did a very good job on Marshall Henderson as he and the Badgers forced him to 6-21 shooting. The senior struggled with turnovers, but did collect six rebounds as well.
10-2: Wisconsin is now 10-2 in opening round games in the NCAA Tournament under Bo Ryan. The Badgers hadn't been bounced from the first round since 2006.
14: Wisconsin managed to get just 14 points inside the paint. Ole Miss countered with 26 points inside.
23.3 The Badgers were 7-30 from beyond the arc against Ole Miss, good for 23.3 percent.
25.4 Wisconsin shot 25.4 percent from the field Friday.
Wisconsin Head Coach Bo Ryan
Wisconsin fell to a lower seeded team in the NCAA Tournament for the fifth time in the last seven years.
On the game:
"Well, I'm extremely proud of these guys to get here. I think there's not too many people that wouldn't agree with the fact that these guys really overcame a lot of odds, really did some nice things during the year. Forgot about their weaknesses, forgot about everything, and just pulled some games off. We won a lot of close games, beat a lot of good teams. But again, it's not a team that really shot the ball well all year. It happened again. So defensively, effort‑wise, getting on the floor, trying to get some charges, trying to do some things. But for us I think for our guys, they didn't handle the physicality in the last five to seven minutes. To me it seemed like the game changed and our guys didn't react as well as they did."
On why Wisconsin struggled to put Ole Miss away:
"We only had three in the second half. In the first half, there were some opportunities that we let get away from us that were very uncharacteristic. It's the NCAA tournament, a little anxious, first game of the day. You know, they're kids. They're 18 to 22. I thought they played through those pretty well to take us into the locker room. I thought if we could take care of the ball in the second half, even shoot the same percentage we did in the first half, we'd have been fine. We're not fouling in the end when you're trying to play from behind. We're not built to play from behind. We maybe had only two games all year where we came from behind in the last three, four minutes."
On the play inside:
Well, when you talk about the rebounding, we had more offensive rebounds. They got more out of theirs. They were able to put theirs back. When you say about the rebounding, unless you have a different stat sheet than I do, they got three more overall. We had three more on the offensive end. It had a lot more to do in the game than that. It's what they were able to do with them. So you always go to the next column and you say, All right, second chance, three‑point advantage. That was part of it. But there was a lot more to it than that."
Senior Forward Jared Berggren
On how Ole Miss controlled the paint:
"Yeah, I mean, they have some big, athletic guys inside. I think we didn't do a great job of taking in their strong, pump fake, drawing fouls. I think the first half we did a decent job of getting to the free‑throw line, catching them out of position a little bit. Second half, they kind of cranked up the pressure. We folded."
On when Ole Miss took control:
"It's hard to pinpoint a certain play or anything like that. But I remember we were up six coming out of a timeout. I want to say Henderson hit a big shot to cut it to three. I'm not sure exactly what happened from there. I think kind of once they got on a run like that, I think that's a team that's done that. Especially down the stretch, they've had a lot of games like that. I think they kind of started feeling it, feeding off that energy. We didn't do a good job to stop their run and get things back in control."
On the loss:
"We had a couple turnovers, not as bad in the second half. Second half did a better job taking care of the ball. When we had a lead, we weren't really able to extend it out. We let them get going a little bit. We knew Henderson was going to get going. I thought we did a good job on him in the first half making him hit tough shots. Second half, doesn't take much to get a player like that to get going. He got hot, did what he does. I think that was part of the difference."
Freshman Forward Sam Dekker
On when Ole Miss took control of the game:
"You know, I don't really know if there's a point. We had a four‑ or six‑point lead. I thought one of us was going to hit a big shot because it usually comes. I thought one of us was going to get one of those big shots, that would have been the step on the throat there. It just never came for us. They managed to chip away, get some big boards, finish around the hoop. Whenever they can get some offensive boards, I mean, I look at myself for that, too. I'm at fault there, too. When they get those offensive boards and put those right back up, those are easy free points for them right there. They just out‑toughed us and managed to chip away at our lead. Henderson got some of those big shots. When he hits those, if you're not stopping that, they're going to be a tough team to beat."
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