Gophers can't connect, lose another big lead

  • Article by: AMELIA RAYNO , Star Tribune
  • Updated: February 29, 2012 - 7:51 AM

Minnesota once again failed to protect a double-digit lead, done in by truly horrid shooting and the inability to play through some tough calls.

view larger photos

  

At some point, the adjectives to describe these Gopher losses run dry. Are they baffling? Mind-numbingly frustrating? Incredibly consistent? Or just flat-out humorous?

Another game, another day, another venue brought the same tired results as the Gophers took another double-digit lead and opportunity against a strong opponent and squandered it.

The Gophers (17-13; 5-12 in the Big Ten) were done no favors by questionable officiating all night, but the team came up short on too many ensuing opportunities to complain.

At the end, it was extremely poor shooting and the failure to covert easy plays that cost the Gophers the last meaningful game of the season as they tumbled 52-45 at No. 14 Wisconsin, their sixth consecutive loss.

"Some calls didn't go our way -- we got six calls in a row against us," said freshman Andre Hollins, who had a strong, 18-point performance in the loss. "Eventually it got out of hand. ... It's definitely demoralizing. You try to fight through it, you keep saying not a lot of people win here, but we had them by 10 ... and it's just frustrating."

After the Gophers built that 10-point lead with two minutes to go in the first half, the Badgers started to creep back, and six minutes into the second half, Wisconsin tied the score at 25 on a controversial three-point play by Mike Bruesewitz. Bruesewitz was initially called for a charge on Andre Hollins, but the call was overturned and called a block.

"You're going to huddle like that and change a call, are you kidding me? It's a joke! It really is," coach Tubby Smith said.

Four minutes later, it was even again -- at 27 -- when Smith was called for a technical after arguing with officials on a foul he thought should have been whistled on a three-point attempt by Andre Hollins.

Jordan Taylor hit both free throws to snatch the Badgers first lead since 10 minutes into the first half and gave them an advantage they would keep the rest of the way.

"After you play a long 30-35 seconds of defense and at the end you get a ticky tack foul, and they go to the line, ticky tack foul and you've got to restart the whole clock again, it mounts the pressure," Ralph Sampson III said.

"Now you've got to go back down here, back to defense and do it all over again. After you do it all over again, it kind of weighs down on you."

From there, the Badgers were able to flip the score, boosting their lead to 10 on strong play by Taylor and Wisconsin's sixth three-pointer of the night.

But amazingly, the Gophers still had a chance late, shrinking the deficit to six with three minutes to play. But Minnesota responded by missing seven of its final eight shots -- two of them layups -- and clanking three of its last four free throw attempts.

"You've got to make those shots at the end of the game and when you don't ... those things really hurt you," Smith said. "It really takes the wind out of your sails because you work so hard to get the ball in the basket and we've got to capitalize."

The Gophers have one game left on the schedule --home against Nebraska-- before the Big Ten tournament that marks their last, Hail Mary shot at getting into the NCAA tournament.

"We have to use [that] game as a catapult," Sampson said, "to kind of swing us into the right mindset going into the Big Ten tournament."

  • NO. 14 WISCONSIN 52, GOPHERS 45

    Up next: 11:30 a.m. Saturday vs. Nebraska • Williams Arena • TV: Big Ten Network (1500-AM)

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions

ADVERTISEMENT

San Francisco - WP: M. Bumgarner 7 FINAL
Kansas City - LP: J. Shields 1
San Diego 10/23/14 7:25 PM
Denver
Detroit 10/26/14 8:30 AM
Atlanta
Buffalo 10/26/14 12:00 PM
NY Jets
St. Louis 10/26/14 12:00 PM
Kansas City
Houston 10/26/14 12:00 PM
Tennessee
Minnesota 10/26/14 12:00 PM
Tampa Bay
Seattle 10/26/14 12:00 PM
Carolina
Baltimore 10/26/14 12:00 PM
Cincinnati
Miami 10/26/14 12:00 PM
Jacksonville
Chicago 10/26/14 12:00 PM
New England
Philadelphia 10/26/14 3:05 PM
Arizona
Oakland 10/26/14 3:25 PM
Cleveland
Indianapolis 10/26/14 3:25 PM
Pittsburgh
Green Bay 10/26/14 7:30 PM
New Orleans
Washington 10/27/14 7:30 PM
Dallas
Houston 85 FINAL
Miami 90
Indiana 89 FINAL
Minnesota 107
Utah 105 FINAL
Oklahoma City 91
Portland 93 FINAL
Denver 75
Phoenix 114 FINAL
LA Lakers 108
LA Clippers 107 FINAL
Golden State 125
San Jose 3 FINAL
Boston 5
NY Rangers 4 FINAL(OT)
New Jersey 3
Toronto 5 FINAL
NY Islanders 2
Detroit 1 FINAL(OT)
Montreal 2
Arizona 3 FINAL(SO)
Nashville 4
Carolina 1 FINAL
Winnipeg 3
Philadelphia 0 FINAL
Chicago 4
Vancouver 3 FINAL
Dallas 6
Florida 4 FINAL(OT)
Colorado 3
Tampa Bay 2 FINAL(OT)
Calgary 1
Arkansas State 40 FINAL
Louisiana 55
Connecticut 10/23/14 6:00 PM
(18) East Carolina
Miami-Florida 10/23/14 7:00 PM
Virginia Tech
So Florida 10/24/14 6:00 PM
Cincinnati
Troy 10/24/14 6:30 PM
South Alabama
BYU 10/24/14 8:00 PM
Boise State
(6) Oregon 10/24/14 9:00 PM
California
North Texas 10/25/14 11:00 AM
Rice
UAB 10/25/14 11:00 AM
Arkansas
Rutgers 10/25/14 11:00 AM
(16) Nebraska
Maryland 10/25/14 11:00 AM
Wisconsin
Texas 10/25/14 11:00 AM
(11) Kansas State
Minnesota 10/25/14 11:00 AM
Illinois
Memphis 10/25/14 11:00 AM
SMU
North Carolina 10/25/14 11:30 AM
Virginia
San Jose St 10/25/14 12:00 PM
Navy
Northern Ill 10/25/14 12:00 PM
Eastern Mich
(25) UCLA 10/25/14 1:00 PM
Colorado
Akron 10/25/14 1:00 PM
Ball State
Massachusetts 10/25/14 1:00 PM
Toledo
Ohio U 10/25/14 1:00 PM
Western Mich
Ga Southern 10/25/14 1:00 PM
Georgia State
Kent State 10/25/14 1:30 PM
Miami-Ohio
Oregon State 10/25/14 2:30 PM
Stanford
Fla Atlantic 10/25/14 2:30 PM
(23) Marshall
Louisiana Tech 10/25/14 2:30 PM
Southern Miss
(1) Miss State 10/25/14 2:30 PM
Kentucky
Georgia Tech 10/25/14 2:30 PM
Pittsburgh
(22) West Virginia 10/25/14 2:30 PM
Oklahoma State
Texas Tech 10/25/14 2:30 PM
(10) TCU
Michigan 10/25/14 2:30 PM
(8) Michigan State
Boston College 10/25/14 2:30 PM
Wake Forest
Central Mich 10/25/14 2:30 PM
Buffalo
Vanderbilt 10/25/14 3:00 PM
Missouri
Old Dominion 10/25/14 3:00 PM
Western Ky
UNLV 10/25/14 3:00 PM
Utah State
Temple 10/25/14 4:00 PM
UCF
(15) Arizona 10/25/14 5:00 PM
Washington St
Texas-El Paso 10/25/14 6:00 PM
TX-San Antonio
Wyoming 10/25/14 6:00 PM
Colorado State
Syracuse 10/25/14 6:00 PM
(21) Clemson
Texas State 10/25/14 6:00 PM
ULM
(3) Ole Miss 10/25/14 6:15 PM
(24) LSU
(4) Alabama 10/25/14 6:30 PM
Tennessee
So Carolina 10/25/14 6:30 PM
(5) Auburn
(13) Ohio State 10/25/14 7:00 PM
Penn State
(20) USC 10/25/14 9:00 PM
(19) Utah
(14) Arizona State 10/25/14 9:45 PM
Washington
Nevada 10/25/14 10:59 PM
Hawaii
Montreal 10/24/14 5:30 PM
Ottawa
Saskatchewan 10/24/14 8:30 PM
Calgary
Hamilton 10/25/14 3:00 PM
Toronto
Brt Columbia 10/25/14 6:00 PM
Winnipeg
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

Date/Opponent Time W L Score
2014 season     
Aug 28 - vs. E. Illinois 6 pmX42-20
Sep 6 - vs. M. Tennessee St. 2:30 pmX35-24
Sep 13 - at TCU 3 pmX30-7
Sep 20 - vs. San Jose St. 3 p.m.X24-7
Sep 27 - at Michigan 2:30 pmX30-14
Oct 11 - vs. Northwestern 11 amX24-17
Oct 18 - vs. Purdue 11 amX39-38
Oct 25 - at Illinois 11 am
Nov 8 - vs. Iowa TBA
Nov 15 - vs. Ohio State TBA
Nov 22 - at Nebraska TBA
Nov 29 - at Wisconsin TBA

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

question of the day

Poll: How will the Vikings and Gophers do this weekend?

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close