After a short break for the holidays, Wisconsin was all business as they cruised to a 71-48 victory over Ohio University in their inaugural trip to the Rock-n-Roll Shootout at Gund Arena in Cleveland, Ohio. The win was Wisconsin fifth in a row and improved the team's record to 8-1.
The true test for the Badgers was how they would respond to a different type of non-conference opponent after recently completing three emotion-filled games versus intrastate rivals. Showing no sign of a let-down, Wisconsin passed the test, dominating the Bobcats from the get-go. The Badgers jumped out to an early 9-1 lead and never looking back. The lead ballooned to 18 points just over midway through the first half before the Badgers settled into a 39-26 halftime advantage. Sophomore Alando Tucker paced the Badgers with 12 points in the half.
The second half featured more of the same as Wisconsin led by as many as 24 points late in the game. Tucker finished with a game-high 22 points on 8 of 13 shooting from the field. A well-balanced attack saw three other Badgers finish in double-figures. Junior point guard Devin Harris added 14 points, seven rebounds and six assists while junior forward Mike Wilkinson added 10 points, nine rebounds, four assists and three blocks. Junior forward Zach Morley added 14 off the bench.
While the team shot just 43 percent from the floor, the Badgers continued to get to the free throw line far more than their opponent, sinking 19 of 28 charity shots compared to the Bobcats' 9 of 13.
It was the fourth time this season that Wisconsin kept an
opponent under 50 points as the stingy Badger defense held Ohio to 40 percent
shooting from the field. Thomas Stephens shot 5 of 11 and led the Bobcats with