Late Night Snacks: Big Ten retains the Big Ten/ACC Challenge title

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GAME OF THE NIGHT: No. 4 Duke 80, No. 2 Wisconsin 70

The Blue Devils pulled it off. They went into the Kohl Center and pushed around the No. 2 team in the country. Well, pushed around may not be the right word, because Duke went small. They switched every exchange, meaning that Wisconsin was completely taken out of what they wanted to do offensively. As a result, they could not take advantage of the size mismatch in the paint, leaving slower Badgers trying to cover quicker Duke guards on the perimeter.

That did not end well for Bucky. Tyus Jones has one of the best games he’ll play all season long and Okafor did just enough while battling foul trouble to help hold off the Badgers.

IMPORTANT OUTCOMES

1. Notre Dame 79, No. 19 Michigan State 78 (OT): Jerian Grant scored 27 points and dished out six assists and Demetrius Jackson added 21 points as the Fighting Irish moved to 7-1 on the season. Branden Dawson destroyed Notre Dame on the glass, but the Irish should have won in regulation if the refs didn’t swallow their whistles.

2. Iowa 60, No. 12 North Carolina 55: Mike Gesell scored 16 points to lead the way for Iowa, who won despite the fact that Aaron White (ten points) missed all ten of his shots from the field. This is the second time North Carolina has lost after an ugly, ugly night offensively. Iowa’s win ensured that the Big Ten would hold onto the Big Ten/ACC Challenge trophy.

3. No. 25 Utah 69, No. 8 Wichita State 68 (OT): Brandon Taylor led four Utes in double-figures with 17 points as the Utes overcame a 10-point deficit to end Wichita State’s 35-game regular season winning streak. Fred Van Vleet missed a front-end of a one-and-one with less than 10 seconds left that could have put the Shockers ahead.

4. No. 7 Virginia 76, No. 21 Maryland 65: The Terps hung around for a while, but Malcolm Brogdon and company were just too much. Brogdon had 18 to lead the way for the Cavs.

STARRED:

1. J.J. Avila: The Colorado State star finished with 20 points, nine boards, four assists and three steals in a really nice win for the Rams over UTEP, 65-62.

2. Jerian Grant and Demetrius Jackson: Notre Dame’s starting back court finished with 49 points on 16-for-28 shooting with six assists and five steals in an overtime win over Michigan State.

3. Dwan Campbell: The Tennessee Tech forward had 31 points, 10 boards, three steals and two assists in a win over Lipscomb.

4. Phil Forte: He had 32 points in a blowout win. And did this:

STRUGGLED:

1. Non-Meeks Tar Heels: Kennedy Meeks was 6-for-8 from the floor and finished with 15 points and 12 boards. His teammates were 13-for-60 from the floor and finished with 40 points. Marcus Paige? He went 4-for-16. That’s not going to get it done.

2. UNLV: The Rebels were up 21-6 just eight minutes into the game and somehow managed to lose to Arizona State 77-55.

3. Creighton: The Bluejays had another tough loss after that statement win over Oklahoma. They lost 77-64 to Tulsa and finished just 6-for-20 from three.

THE REST OF THE TOP 25

  • No. 10 Villanova outlast La Salle in their first Big 5 matchup, winning 84-70.
  • No. 23 Butler knocked off Indiana State, 77-54, continuing their hot start from the Bahamas.

NOTABLES

  • Marcus Thornton had 37 points on 14-for-18 shooting (8-for-11 from three), but William & Mary lost 68-67 to Richmond.
  • Harvard picked up a nice win over a good mid-major in Northeastern, 60-46.
  • Askia Booker was 5-for-6 from three for Colorado. He was 4-for-17 on the season entering the game.
  • Big 5 play got underway Wednesday night, with Saint Joseph’s beating Temple 58-56 and No. 10 Villanova taking care of La Salle, 84-70.
  • Davidson knocked off Charlotte, 92-86, to move to 5-1 on the year.
  • Cal outlast Montana in double overtime, 78-76, thanks to 22 points, 15 boards and five assists from Ty Wallace.