Tucker to the Rescue

When his team needed him the most, Alando Tucker found his shooting touch, helping the Badgers avoid the upset in Evanston.

EVANSTON, Ill.- Alando Tucker scored 15 of his team-high 17 points in the second half to lead Wisconsin (17-1, 3-0 Big Ten) to a 56-50 victory over Northwestern (10-7, 0-4) Saturday at Welsh-Ryan Arena. The Badgers remain in first place of the Big Ten standings and have now won 13 in a row for the first time since 1941.

Tucker added a game-high eight rebounds and surpassed Danny Jones for second place on UW's all-time scoring list in the contest. He's now scored 1,858 points in 116 career games. Michael Finley is Wisconsin's all-time leading scorer with 2,147 points.

Northwestern has lost all four of its games in January after closing December with four consecutive wins. NU is averaging 49.5 points in Big Ten contests.

The Wildcats played without leading scorer and rebounder Kevin Coble, but got a career-high 18 points from Jeff Ryan and 11 from Tim Doyle. Northwestern scored 28 points off 15 Badger turnovers and led by as many as five in the second half.

Wisconsin struggled to find its rhythm against Northwestern's zone defense and found itself trailing 36-31 with 15 minutes remaining in the second half. That's when Tucker provided the spark, driving to the basket and leaping over a Northwestern defender for a two-handed dunk.

Kammron Taylor hit a long jumper on UW's next possession and the NU lead slipped to one. Tucker finished an 8-2 run with four free throws and the Badgers regained the lead at 39-38 with 8:48 left to play.

Marcus Landry had eight points and seven rebounds for Wisconsin, but it was his defense down the stretch that secured the win. Similar to what he did against Ohio State Tuesday, Landry blocked three shots over a five-minute stretch. The first led to a Tucker 3. Another led to a Tucker jumper and a 50-44 lead with three minutes remaining.

Ryan hit a 3-pointer with 51 seconds left to pull NU within two points at 52-50, but Taylor and Tucker each made a pair of free throws in the final 20 seconds.

Post-Game Notes

• Northwestern's leading scorer and rebounder, freshman Kevin Coble, missed his first game of the season due to an ankle injury. Coble is averaging 12.1 points and 4.9 rebounds this season.

• Wisconsin trailed at the half (26-24) for just the second time this season.

• Wisconsin has won 13 games in a row for the first time since 1941.

• Alando Tucker has scored in double figures in 40 of his last 41 games (25 consecutive).

• At 17-1, the Badgers have tied their best start in school history.

• NU lost for the first time in three games against Wisconsin at Welsh-Ryan Arena.

• Marcus Landry has blocked seven shots total in his last two games.

Badger Nation Top Stories