On Monday night, the #23 ranked Wisconsin Badgers visited #3 Purdue and handed the Boilermakers an upset loss, with a final score of 74-69.
Sophomore standout Johnny Davis led the way for the Badgers with a career night. Davis scored a career-high 37 points and added 14 rebounds against a lengthy Purdue team to lead Wisconsin to their biggest victory of the year.
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Trailing by seven points with 11 minutes to go, Wisconsin hit big shots down the stretch to surge ahead, courtesy of Davis and senior guard Brad Davison. The Wisconsin defense also came up big up against one of the highest powered offenses in the nation, with the Boilermakers averaging over 87 points per game. The Badgers forced 12 turnovers and held Purdue to just 69 points — only the second time this season they’ve scored below 70.
It was a huge performance from UW, stemming off of two close games against non-conference opponents. Heading into the rest of Big Ten play, this was a huge confidence boost for a Badgers team without a ton of experience. Winning road games in the Big Ten is never easy — especially against a team like Purdue.
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At this point in the season, the Badgers have defied all the preseason expectations and uncertainty that surrounded the team. It wasn’t evident where Wisconsin would get scoring from, but Johnny Davis has answered those questions and made a huge leap from the player he was last season.
As one of the most dynamic all-around scorers in the nation and a Wooden Award candidate, he’s helped Wisconsin climb up the Big Ten ladder, despite being projected to finish 10th in the conference before the season began.
The Badgers face another upcoming test in the Iowa Hawkeyes, who are 11-3 and have won 4 straight games. If Wisconsin can continue their success in the strong-as-ever Big 10 conference, expect them to remain as a top-10 team in the country and claim a high seed in the March Madness tournament.