WISCONSIN SPORTS ROUND-UP: Knight's 37 points leads Bucks over Lakers
MILWAUKEE - The Milwaukee Bucks rolled to a 94-79 victory over the Lakers in Los Angeles on New Year's Eve. Point guard Brandon Knight scored a career-high 37 points with eight rebounds and four steals, as Milwaukee ended a three-game losing streak.
The Bucks opened with a 14-0 run as the Lakers missed their first 11 shots. Milwaukee led by nine at the half, and by as many as 22 in the third quarter before the Lakers tried coming back a pair of runs. LA got to within nine when Ersan Ilyasova hit a lay-up with just under two minutes left to put the Bucks' lead back to double-digits. Ilyasova had 15 points and 12 rebounds, and Luke Ridnour added 11. Pau Gasol and Nick Young each had 25 points for the Lakers, who lost their sixth straight. Gasol moved past Pete Maravich into 100th place on the NBA's all-time scoring list. The Lakers scored just 33 points in the first half, their lowest for the season as the Bucks out-shot them 44-to-36 percent. Milwaukee improved to 7-24, and will play at Utah tomorrow night.
The Marquette University men's basketball team lost its Big East Conference opener at Creighton last night, 67-49. The Blue Jays improved to 11-2 overall, as they won their sixth straight in front of a raucous New Year's Eve sellout crowd of 18,000-plus in Omaha. Creighton's Doug McDermott tied a school record with 35 three-point attempts. He led the Jays with 19 points in their first-ever contest in the newly re-aligned Big East. Creighton out-shot the Golden Eagles 40-to-36 percent, and Marquette committed 15 turnovers. Creighton was up by 19 with 11-and-a-half minutes left. Marquette got to within 12, but went on to lose their sixth overall game against eight victories. The Golden Eagles' six losses have come to teams with a combined record of 64-8. Jamil Wilson and Chris Otule each scored 10 for Marquette, which was the pre-season favorite to win the league title. The Eagles will host DePaul on Saturday.
There's only one major college basketball game today involving a Wisconsin team. The UW-Green Bay women are at home against Maine. Yesterday, the Marquette women lost at home to Villanova 63-61. Caroline Coyer scored 17 of her 20 points in the second half, as her Wildcats improved to 10-2 overall and 1-1 in the Big East. Katherine Plouffe scored 14 for Marquette, which is also 1-1 in conference play and 10-2 overall. Plouffe returned after missing three games due to family concerns. The Golden Eagles play at Georgetown on Saturday.
In Division III college basketball, there's only one game on the docket today involving a Wisconsin team. The UW-Stout women play Saint Joseph's of Brooklyn in a holiday tournament at Colorado Springs, Col.. Stout defeated Colorado College on New Year's Eve, 80-60.
Wisconsin will try to win its first bowl game in five years, when the 19th-ranked Badgers play Number-eight South Carolina at noon in the Capital One Bowl. The Badgers' last bowl victory came in the 2009 Champs Sports Bowl. Almost two dozen Wisconsin seniors will try to leave Orlando with a bowl victory, over losing three straight Rose Bowls in Pasadena. South Carolina is going for its third straight bowl victory over a Big Ten team. The Gamecocks beat Michigan by five in the Outback Bowl a year ago, and they topped Nebraska 30-13 in the 2012 Capital One Bowl. South Carolina coach Steve Spurrier is 3-4 in bowl games. Wisconsin coach Gary Andersen hopes to cap off his first season at the UW with a bowl win.
Team USA lost to Canada this afternoon, 3-2, in their final preliminary round game at the World Junior hockey championships in Sweden. Nic Kerdiles of the Wisconsin Badgers had an assist on the Americans' first goal. Sun Prairie native Will Butcher of Boston College had an assist on the other score. Team Canada broke a 1-1 tie by scoring a pair of power play goals early in the third period. Curtis Lazar scored the eventual game-winner for the Canadians. The U.S. finished the preliminary round at 3-1 in second place in Group-"A." They'll play Russia, the third-place team in Group-"B," in the quarter-finals on Thursday.
James Lazarcik and Lana Wieseman, both of Beloit College, have been named the Midwest Conference men's-and-women's basketball players-of-the-week. Lazarcik, a senior forward, had 31 points and 13 rebounds in a win over Knox College. After that, he had another double-double with 20 points and 11 boards in an overtime victory over La Verne. Lazarcik shot almost 85-percent from the floor during the two contests. Wieseman, a sophomore forward, tied a school scoring record with 34 points in a win over Knox College in which she also had 10 rebounds. Wieseman also had 18 points and nine boards against Redlands of California.
Former college basketball coach Johnny Orr passed away yesterday at age 86. Orr, a native of Taylorville, Ill. attended Beloit College and was a member of the great Dolph Stanley teams of the early 1950s that made Beloit a small-college basketball power at that time, including a bid in the National Invitation Tournament (NIT). Orr was an assistant at the University of Wisconsin under then head coach John Erickson in the early 1960s before he got his first head coaching job at University of Massachusetts in 1964. Orr coached at Michigan from 1968-1980, leading the Wolverines to the NCAA championship game in 1976 and then went Iowa State in 1980 where he became that school's all-time winningest coach.
In the NBA...
Milwaukee 94, Los Angeles Lakers 79
In men's college basketball...
Creighton 67, Marquette 49
UW-Stevens Point 66, North Central 64
UW-Eau Claire 70, Northwestern College of Minnesota 65
UW-River Falls 76, Northland 46
UW-La Crosse 73, Gustavus Adolphus 58
Wisconsin Lutheran 81, Concordia-Chicago 63
Lakeland 81, Finlandia 76
In women's college basketball...
Villanova 63, Marquette 61
UW-Stout 80, Colorado College 60
UW-Superior 75, Saint Scholastica 63
Lakeland 71, Finlandia 61
In Wisconsin boys' high school basketball...
Beach Ball Classic
Bishop Loughlin of New York 68, Madison Memorial 62