Wisconsin vs North Carolina

We’ll see if I stay awake for this whole thing.  Hoping Wisconsin (WI) can at least keep it to a respectable margin again North Carolina (UNC).  Not expecting a win.

HEAD NOTES

  • UNC was mighty impressive.  I’m sure I’m not the original author of this phrase, but they are an “any weather (comfortable in the 50s, 60s, 70s, 80s)” type team that is so dangerous in March.
  • UNC dominated WI on the glass 38-26.  Part of this is cold shooting from WI so UNC could snatch loads of rebounds on the defensive boards.
  • Hayes (3-11, 1-7 3P, 5 Rb, 1A, 1Stl, 2 Turnovers) + Koening (1-13, 0-5 3P, 1A, 1Stl, 1Blk, 3 turnovers) just brutal games from both.  Fairly obvious point, but WI is not going to be competitive in many games if those two are struggling that much.
  • Perhaps most alarming about the clunker from Hayes + Koenig was the decision making.  Poor shot selection and bad passes.  The kind of performance you’d expect in November from freshman against #4.  Not from 4 year contributors like them.
  • WI was 6-10 on FT.  UNC 12-12.  WI reliance on jumpers means it doesn’t get FT.  That has to change moving forward.
  • Hayes was a solid post game.  He was 1/2 on shots from the lane  Everything else was outside.
  • I love Ethan Happ, especially his energy on defense and rebounding.  But his post game needs more aggression.  Timidity is an ugly habit.  He needs to muscle it up quickly and get the foul or the basket.  His redshirt year he got to guard Kaminsky in scout team work.  Imitation and flattery and all.

1st Half

:30 in and UNC already tougher on the glass than Georgetown last night.  Hayes and Koenig way off on early triples on WI first 3 possessions.  How bad must you be to not make any preseason award watch lists  .  UNC and WI combined 1-11 to start, only basket is a UNC midrange.  Happ continues to struggle with large defenders which is bad because he plays in the Big Ten and most teams have tall players.  Teams are now 2-15, with a pair of UNC midrange the only baskets.  WI already looks like its out of ideas as Hayes fires up a midrange early in the shot clock.  So much for roaring out of the blocks like in the first 2 games in Maui.

14:48 UNC 6 WI 0

If Demetri Trice can finish his WI career without needing the prologue “younger brother of Michigan State’s Travis Trice” he will be an unparalleled success.  UNC with another midrange shot and it’s 8-0.  UNC feasting in that area.  WI now 0-11.  UNC really could be out of sight by now but credit Wisconsin’s D.  Trice hits a 3.  Badgers won’t be shutout.  But UNC answers with a triple of its own.

11:46′ UNC 11 WI 3

Charlie Thomas gets nice post position and hits a short shot.  Vitto Brown drains a 3 and WI trims the UNC lead to 3.  How would 19-17 sound at the half Roy Williams?  Happ bricks FT but answers back with a 2nd steal.  Pure chaos after Hayes throws the ball away.  Koenig and Hayes well off the mark tonight.  UNC still just holding a 5-point advantage despite a dreadful offensive display from WI.  Now 7 off another midrange jumper.  UNC gets the tempo up but WI is able to slow it down.

6:26′ UNC 15 WI 11

Happ abused by Meeks for 2 and Happ returns the favor and draws the foul.  Berry sticks a deep 3 for UNC and UNC back to a 6-point margin.  No offensive rebounding for WI tonight.  This ain’t Georgetown.  Berry hits another jumper and Gard takes a TO as UNC leads 22-14.  Hayes explodes to the rimfor his first 2 points of the night.

3:58′ UNC 22 WI 16

If WI can keep the deficit around 6 before half I think they’d be happy with that.  So far the Badgers have 5 points from Happ + Koenig + Hayes.    Hayes tries to drive and then throws one into the stands.  He needs to talk to #12’s family.  UNC gets out in transition off another WI miss and eventually gets to the FT line off the offensive rebound.  Hayes continues a stellar night (wonder how he would describe it) by fouling UNC on a 3pointer (clear foul, good call).  UNC cans all 3 and it’s a 9-point lead for the Tar Heels.

HALFTIME UNC 29 WI 20

Not sure I can offer much stellar analysis beyond noting that Happ + Hayes + Koenig are going to have to account for more than 25% of WI scoring if the Badgers are going to be competitive.  Also, making more than 8 shots in a half would be really good.  UNC isn’t a pushover with respect to rebounding like the Hoyas.

Stats from ESPN

Matchup
FG Made-Attempted 8-27 11-29
Field Goal % 29.6 37.9
3PT Made-Attempted 3-10 2-9
Three Point % 30.0 22.2
FT Made-Attempted 1-3 5-5
Free Throw % 33.3 100.0
Total Rebounds 15 23
Offensive Rebounds 0 3
Defensive Rebounds 15 20
Team Rebounds 0 0
Assists 4 4
Steals 4 0
Blocks 2 1
Turnovers 6 7
Team Turnovers 0 0
Total Turnovers 6 7
Personal Fouls 4 5

2nd Half

Jackson misses a 3P, this time not fouled by Hayes.   Badgers 2-2 to start 2nd half so offensive already scorching.   Hayes drills a 3 to get WI back within 6, but Jackson answers with a driving layup for UNC.  Koenig forces up a dumb 3P early in the shot clock.

15:39′ UNC 37 WI 29

Berry just killing WI from anywhere and everywhere on the floor.  Converts the 3-point play and UNC up 11.  Danger time for WI here until the Under 12.  Right now, #10 Louisville has 31 points with 8:32 left in the game so WI not the lamest offense among ranked teams tonight.   2nd possession of 2nd half where Koenig just dribbles down the court and clangs a 3P.  run some offense fellas.   UNC continues to grind WI inside.  Another Badger turnover and UNC with a 15-point lead threatening to put this game away.

11:41′ UNC 46 WI 29

Gard throwing junk now.  Brings in The Belgian to try and get something going but he bricks a 3P.  Jackson explodes to the rim and it’s a 19-point deficit.  UNC smother D forces a shot clock violation.  WI shows a little full court pressure and UNC throws it away.  Vitto Brown hits a desperately needed 3, but UNC beats WI down the floor and draws a shooting foul on it.  Jackson hits a 3 and UNC is up 20.   Game over.

7:28′ UNC 54 WI 36

UNC lead hits off a lob inbounds play and Jackson again gets to the rim.  UNC up 22 and I’m going to bed.

Thursday a.m. update: turns out WI didn’t rally for the win.  bummer.

Full Game Stats from ESPN

Matchup
FG Made-Attempted 21-55 28-57
Field Goal % 38.2 49.1
3PT Made-Attempted 8-22 3-12
Three Point % 36.4 25.0
FT Made-Attempted 6-10 12-12
Free Throw % 60.0 100.0
Total Rebounds 26 38
Offensive Rebounds 4 7
Defensive Rebounds 22 31
Assists 12 10
Steals 8 3
Blocks 5 3
Total Turnovers 11 12
Personal Fouls 12 13
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