Thanks to Player of the Year candidate Frank Kaminsky, Wisconsin had only lost two games coming into Tuesday night's date with Maryland. Kaminsky had only played in one of those losses, and the Badgers had won 10 straight since their stunning defeat at Rutgers. Could the Terps keep their bid for a Big Ten title alive in Tuesday night's clash of the titans, or would the Badgers take another step towards securing a No. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament?
Game of the night: Wisconsin at Maryland
Dez Wells scored 26 points, Melo Trimble hit a clutch layup, and Maryland upset Wisconsin 59-53 on Tuesday night to move to second place in the Big Ten. The Terps got off to a hot start by getting to the basket in the first half. Wells had 14 points before the break to give Maryland a 31-20 halftime advantage over a Wisconsin team that couldn't manage to get even wide open three-pointers to fall. The Badgers were just 1-for-11 from beyond the arc in the first half and shot 30 percent from the field in the period.
Wisconsin got back in the game by being more aggressive on offense and finding mismatches for Kaminsky to exploit. The senior led his team with 18 points, while Sam Dekker pitched in with 14 points and a game-high nine rebounds. However, the Badger guards failed to support the frountcourt with their shooting. Josh Gasser and Bronson Koenig combined to go 3-for-17 from the field.
It only took six minutes for Wisconsin to draw within two points in the second half, but back-to-back buckets by Jake Layman pushed the Terrapin lead back up to six. Koenig tied the score at 47-47 to just under seven minutes to play, but Wells answered with four straight free throws and then an emphatic baseline slam to put Maryland back up by five with four minutes left. Kaminsky dropped in a short jumper to get the Badgers within three with one minute on the clock, but Trimble, who did not attempt a free throw during the first 39 minutes of the game, drove into Josh Gasser while connecting on a running layup to put the game to bed.
The victory moves Maryland to 11-4 in conference and helps out their NCAA Tournament seeding. With the loss, Wisconsin is probably going to have to win the rest of their games to have a shot at a No.1 seed.