History was not meant to repeat itself for Wisconsin.
The No.1 seed in the East Region, Maryland, ended eighth-seeded Wisconsin’s title hopes when it knocked the Badgers out of the second round of the NCAA tournament 87-57 in Washington, D.C. yesterday.
Trying to pull off the upset and take the next step to the Final Four with the same seeding that got the Badgers there in the 2000 NCAA tournament, Wisconsin ran out of steam against the top-seeded Terrapins.
The Badgers played Maryland close in the first half before falling behind early in the last 20 minutes. Wisconsin had the lead after the first five minutes of the game, aided by a three-pointer by senior Charlie Wills that put UW up by four points with 14:52 left in the first half. Maryland’s Tahj Holden and Chris Wilcox pulled the Terrapins back into the game, giving the No.1 seed a 38-30 lead at the half.
However, that lead would increase in the last 20 minutes of play. The Badgers scored only eight points in the first 11 minutes of the second half, which failed to compete with the 31 points the Terrapins quickly put on the board. Guard Juan Dixon, who tallied 29 points in the game for the Terrapins, led Maryland’s scoring run. Wisconsin was unable to come back from this second half deficit, eventually falling by 30 points at the game’s conclusion.
In their final game as Badgers, seniors Travon Davis and Charlie Wills both scored in double figures. Davis tallied 15 points on 5-7 shooting, and Wills scored a team high 17 points. Kirk Penney added nine points for the Badgers, while freshmen Devin Harris and Mike Wilkinson each tallied seven points.