Wisconsin stuns No. 19 Indiana in OT

By Tamira Madsen, The Sports Xchange

MADISON, Wis. -- Junior forward Nigel Hayes provided the heroics as Wisconsin knocked off a second Big Ten Conference opponent in nine days.

Hayes scored six of his game-high 31 points in the extra session as the Badgers shocked No. 19 Indiana with a 82-79 Big Ten Conference overtime win on Tuesday night at the Kohl Center.


Hayes shot 7-of-12 from the field -- and was 17-of-22 from the free-throw line -- for the Badgers (12-9, 4-4), who snapped Indiana's 12-game winning streak. Wisconsin has won three in a row.

Hayes, who scored 25 points in the Badgers' win over then-No. 4 Michigan State on Jan. 17, said he felt confident against the Hoosiers.

"I've got this mindset that I feel I'm the best player on the court and no one can guard me," said Hayes, who had five rebounds and two assists. "It's not a matter of who's guarding me, it's a matter of where I catch the ball and what move can I do next to try to score."


Senior guard Yogi Ferrell scored a team-high 30 points and grabbed seven rebounds for the Hoosiers (17-4, 6-1), who lost their 14th straight game in Madison.

Freshman center Thomas Bryant added 16 points and seven rebounds for Indiana, which outrebounded Wisconsin 32-26.

Indiana coach Tom Crean admitted some players were "under the weather," but said that was no excuse for sloppy play at crucial moments throughout the game.

"There were too many mistakes for us to win the game and when you're on the road, you've got to really be able to put it away," said Crean of the Hoosiers, who committed 19 turnovers.

The Badgers finished 28-of-37 from the charity stripe. The Hoosiers shot 16-of-18 from the foul line, a statistic that left Crean befuddled with his team's effort.

"Certainly the 19 free-throw differential is a head scratcher for me, and we've got to continue to look at how we create more contact," Crean said. "I was told Yogi was doing it -- he was creating the contact, and that's why he wasn't getting to the line."

Redshirt freshman Ethan Happ contributed 25 points on 10-of-15 shooting and had a game-high eight rebounds for Wisconsin.


Crean said the chemistry between Happ and Hayes is strong, and he thinks the Badgers are showing improvement as the season wears on, especially with performance in the post. Wisconsin has posted a 4-4 record since interim coach Greg Gard took over the program when Bo Ryan retired on Dec. 15.

"It was a great game in the sense of they have an excellent team," Crean said. "Greg is doing a fantastic job with that staff. Bo's teams always got better and I don't think there's any difference with Greg. They just get better."

Redshirt sophomore guard Jordan Hill, who came off the bench for the Badgers, added a career-high 13 points, including critical 3-point buckets in the second half.

Ferrell drilled a go-ahead 3-pointer with 1 minute, 13 seconds left to give Indiana a 69-67 lead, but Wisconsin's Hayes tied the game at two junctures with 45 seconds left in regulation.

With Hayes in his face, Ferrell missed a short jumper with two seconds left that sent the game to overtime.

Hayes scored 12 first-half points to pace Wisconsin to a 35-34 halftime lead against Indiana.

Hayes shot 5-of-8 from the field and Happ contributed 11 for the Badgers, who shot 52 percent from the field (13 of 25) in the first. Wisconsin hit five of its final six field goals to maintain an edge.


Ferrell scored 13 points and grabbed six rebounds to keep the Hoosiers close. He scored five points during a 7-0 run with less than one minute left in the half as the Hoosiers trimmed Wisconsin's lead to one point.

Ferrell scored two straight buckets in transition, including a layup with 11:45 to go in the first, to put Indiana in front 16-11.

Hayes drained a pair of free throws to pull the Badgers within one at 22-21 with 4:54 left.

Hill drained a 3-pointer to give the Badgers their first lead at 24-20 with 3:59 to go until intermission.

Hayes heaved a half-court shot at the first-half buzzer that clanked off the front rim.

Wisconsin lost four Big Ten games by an average of 3.8 points and played seven games decided by three points or less.

Hayes said the Badgers are paying attention to details in finishing games.

"What we always preach is take care of the little things," Hayes said. "We're finally starting to do that, and it's paying dividends for us. Hopefully, throughout the whole team, the guys realize we are a lot better than our record indicates."

Latest Headlines