State Basketball Roundup: Tonight, it's the Bucks' turn to try and end Miami's winning streakWisconsin Sports
-- The Milwaukee Bucks will take their turn to try-and-end the Miami Heat’s juggernaut.
The Milwaukee Bucks will take their turn to try-and-end the Miami Heat’s juggernaut. The Heat will bring a 20-game winning streak to the B-M-O Harris Bradley Center. LeBron James-and-Company have a long way to go before breaking the N-B-A’s all-time winning streak of 33 games set by the Los Angeles Lakers in the 1971-72 season. By the way, the Bucks ended that streak with a 16-point home victory. Milwaukee can repeat that history tonight, but will need a concerted effort. Coach Jim Boylan says it’s an important game for the Bucks, as they try to seal their best playoff position possible. Right now, Milwaukee is two-and-a-half games behind Boston, Atlanta, and Chicago for the fifth, sixth, and seventh Eastern Conference playoff spots. And if they don’t pass any of those teams, the Bucks will get Miami in the first round.
For the second straight year, it’s one-and-done for Marquette in the Big East men’s basketball tournament. The third-seeded Golden Eagles lost to sixth-seeded Notre Dame 73-to-65 last night at Madison Square Garden. There were 13 lead changes before the Fighting Irish took the lead for good on a put-back by Garrick Sherman with 6:32 to play. Marquette committed 16 turnovers to just seven for the Fighting Irish. Jamil Wilson scored 16 points for the 12th-ranked Golden Eagles. They fell to 23-and-8, but the Eagles still hope to get a Top-Four seed when the N-C-A-A Tournament pairings are announced on Selection Sunday. Pat Connaughton scored 18 points on six three-pointers for 24th-ranked Notre Dame. The Irish improved to 25-and-8, as they advanced to the Big East semi-finals for the fourth straight year. They’ll play Louisville tonight.
Wisconsin will play Michigan this afternoon in the quarter-finals of the Big Ten men’s tournament. The fourth-seeded Badgers had a bye yesterday, while the fifth-seeded Wolverines got past Number-12 Penn State 83-to-66. Bo Ryan’s Badgers defeated Michigan in their only regular season contest. Wisconsin’s shooting has been inconsistent all year, but its defense has been solid. The Badgers led the Big Ten in scoring defense, giving up just 56 points a game. They also gave up the lowest field-goal percentage at 39 – and they led the league in three-point defense and defensive rebounding percentage. Wisconsin enters the league tournament at 21-and-10 overall, while Michigan is 26-and-6 with a Number-six national ranking. The 22nd-ranked Badgers have not won the Big Ten tourney since 2008.
Colfax will play Algoma tomorrow for the Division-Four championship at the girls’ state high school basketball tournament. Both won their divisional semi-finals last night at the tournament’s new location in Green Bay. Colfax improved to 26-and-1 with a 42-to-41 victory over Racine Prairie. Algoma advanced by eliminating the A-P’s top-ranked team, Cuba City, 62-to-39. Algoma opened the game with a 10-0 run and never trailed after that. In Division-Five, Barneveld and Wisconsin Rapids Assumption will play for the title after winning their semi-final contests. Barneveld defeated previously-unbeaten South Shore, 54-to-45 despite 26 points from South Shore’s Megan Gustafson. Assumption eliminated Wausau Newman 60-to-37. The Royals led by 19 at the half and rolled from there.
Semi-finals in the state’s three largest divisions will be played today. The Division-Three semis are up first at 9:05, when defending champion Kewaunee plays Lodi. Unbeaten Neillsville, the Division-Four titlist a year ago, will face East Troy in the other D-Three semi. In Division-Two, Green Bay Notre Dame and Milton will square off this afternoon, followed by undefeated returning champion New London against New Berlin Eisenhower. The Division-One semi-finals are set for tonight. Hartland Arrowhead plays Mukwonago, and Superior takes on Milwaukee Riverside.