Sunday, December 7, 2008

Marquette 61 Wisconsin 58

A long-standing rivalry or a case of David and Goliath?

Early in the Marquette-Wisconsin game, it looked as though the Badgers (6-2) were coming in as a Goliath, leading the game for most of the first half. The team’s largest lead over the Golden Eagles (7-1) hit ten points with just under seven minutes left in the half. The Badgers finished out the first twenty minutes with 33 points to Marquette’s 27, led by Keaton Nankivil and Trevon Hughes. The team did not just end the half with the lead in points, they also racked up upwards of 10 team fouls in the first half alone.

The tide of the game turned when Marquette came back strong in the second half. The team stepped up their rebounding efforts, moving from only 10 total rebounds in the first half to 31 total by game's end. Led by senior guard Jerel McNeal, whose season-high 26 points were almost half of MU's total points, the Golden Eagles were able to secure a victory over the Badgers, 61-58. Other high scorers for the Golden Eagles were senior guards Dominic James with 10 points and Wesley Matthews with 9, as well as junior forward Lazar Hayward, who also chipped in 9.

When asked what contributed to the Badger’s loss, head coach Bo Ryan simply said, “We didn’t take [advantage of] the opportunities on our end.” The win is Marquette’s 53rd victory over the innerstate rivals, and marks the first back-to-back victories for Marquette in the series since the 1995-96 and 1996-97 seasons.

Patty Marra
MUTV News Director

1 comment:

Mike said...

That was a great second half performance. McNeal is really turning it up in his senior year. 18.2 pts, 39% from 3, 2+ steals (he's averaged at least 2 steals every year- incredible).

They've really got to push harder as it's their last year with McNeal and Matthews. It'd be a shame to see them underperform in their final season.