Friday, December 15, 2017
Sports

Badgers bash past Baylor

ANAHEIM, Calif. — Frank Kaminsky had 19 points and six blocks, and Wisconsin rolled to a dominant 69-52 victory over Baylor on Thursday night.

Ben Brust hit three 3-pointers and scored 14 for the second-seeded Badgers (29-7), who jumped to a 14-point lead in the first half and never let up.

The 7-foot Kaminsky and his disciplined teammates shredded the Baylor zone defense that played so well in the first two games. Wisconsin also methodically shut down Baylor's talented offense while moving into its second region final in 13 years under Bo Ryan, who has never reached a Final Four in a 700-win career.

"I'd be honored to be a part of that," Kaminsky said.

"We get 40 more minutes, and I'm awfully proud of them," Ryan said.

Cory Jefferson scored 15 for the sixth-seeded Bears (26-12).

Isaiah Austin and Kenny Chery scored 12 apiece for Baylor, which needed a late rally just to match their lowest-scoring performance of the season in the final seconds.

"Wisconsin really played a great game, and we did a very poor job," Baylor coach Scott Drew said.

The Badgers countered everything the Bears do well. Wisconsin wrecked Baylor's zone, negated their 3-point shooting with perimeter defense, kept the tempo at the Badgers' preferred speed and held a 39-33 rebounding edge.

Wisconsin led 29-16 at halftime.

Three lower-bowl sections of the arena were packed with red-clad Badgers fans. Their Badgers quickly sapped all of the drama out of these schools' first meeting, but they let loose with boos when Baylor began intentionally fouling in the final four minutes.

Wisconsin is in its 16th straight NCAA Tournament, including all 13 years under Ryan. The Badgers haven't been to the Final Four since retired coach Dick Bennett got them to Indianapolis in 2000.

The Badgers got multiple open looks on nearly every possession in the first half, moving the ball around the perimeter for open 3-pointers or getting it down low to Kaminsky, who scored eight of Wisconsin's first 10 points.

arizona 70, san diego st. 64: Nick Johnson scored all of his 15 in the last 2:45 after missing his first 10 shots and the No. 1 seed Wildcats (33-4) rallied to beat the No. 4 Aztecs (31-5). Aaron Gordon and Rondae Hollis-Jefferson scored 15 each for Arizona. Xavier Thames scored 25 and Dwayne Polee added 13 points for the Aztecs. Those two tried to bail out SDSU in the final minute, each hitting 3-pointers before Thames' basket cut the deficit to 65-61 with 38 seconds left. SDSU got called for a 10-second violation, and the Wildcats regained the ball. Johnson got fouled and made both free throws for a 67-61 lead. Thames was fouled on a 3-point attempt, and he sank all three free throws. The Aztecs had Johnson trapped, but he passed out of the double team, and Gabe York hit one free throw.

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