Gameday preview: Gophers at Wisconsin
- February 12, 2014 - 9:19 PM
8 p.m. at Wisconsin • Kohl center • TV: ESPN (1500-AM)
Gophers at a glance: Minnesota received the spark it needed to end a three-game losing streak, getting a 16-point, five-assist game from DeAndre Mathieu and 14 points and eight rebounds from backup center Mo Walker to beat Indiana on Saturday. Joey King started for the first time in his college career (either at Drake or Minnesota) after three losses prompted coach Richard Pitino to replace Oto Osenieks with him. King with four points and two rebounds against the Hoosiers. Andre Hollins has played in the past two games for the Gophers after severely spraining his left ankle against Wisconsin at Williams Arena on Jan. 22. Wednesday, he said he felt about 90 percent healed. Without one of their best perimeter threats at full strength, the Gophers have struggled from the outside, making only 25.5 percent of their shots from behind the arc over the past three games. Thursday marks the fifth ranked team the Gophers have played this season.
Wisconsin at a glance: The Badgers, who recently re-entered the AP Top 25 poll after dropping off for a week, are likely to be mad about losing 81-68 to the Gophers at the Barn. Since then, Wisconsin — which withstood a skid in which it won only one of six games — has looked much more like the team that started the season 16-0, taking victories over Illinois on the road and then beating No. 9 Michigan State 60-58 at home Sunday. The Spartans’ Adreian Payne hit the game-tying three-pointer with 8.7 seconds left, but Traevon Jackson won it for the Badgers with a pull-up jumper with 2.1 seconds left. That game marked the first time Wisconsin had held an opponent under 40 percent shooting from three-point range in four games. Nigel Hayes won his third Big Ten Freshman of the Week award Monday and has averaged 15 points and 3.3 rebounds in his past three games.
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