The Badgers fought and fought and then again Thursday morning in the Bahamas. Wisconsin overcame a 15-point second-half lead by Kansas to take a three-point lead over the No. 3 team in the nation with less than a minute left.
Kevin McCullar Jr. three to tie the game and force overtime, and Bobby Pettiford Jr.’s acrobatic layup with 0.2 remaining it ended up being the difference. Kansas escaped with a 69-68 win, but Wisconsin looked like a team capable of much more than its projected ninth-place finish in the Big Ten.
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Freshman guard Connor Essegian was once again the offensive energizer, Tyler Wahl led the way with 23 points and the Badger defense, unsurprisingly, looked stout. Here’s how Wisconsin Twitter reacted to the dramatic loss:
Second chances were the story from the opening tip, appropriate
— Asher Low (@alow_33) November 24, 2022
Just when you think you have the answers, someone else changes the questions!
Bobby Pettiford – the least likely hero – steps up as Kansas stuns Wisconsin at the buzzer!
This is ****** November ONLY.
— Jon Rothstein (@JonRothstein) November 24, 2022
Wisconsin could be the Tennessee Titans of college basketball
— Ben Kenney (@benzkenney) November 24, 2022
Kansas sneaks by Wisconsin in OT in the Bahamas.
The Jayhawks need to stop spending so much time on the Lazy River.
— Jeff Goodman (@GoodmanHoops) November 24, 2022
An incredible second half from Wisconsin, which more or less gave America the blueprint to beat Kansas, but the Jayhawks weren’t going to quit. Fun game. https://t.co/5cMSx04d11
— Rob Dauster (@RobDauster) November 24, 2022
No. 3 Kansas escapes with a last-second 69-68 overtime victory against Wisconsin in the Battle 4 Atlantis semifinals. Heartbreaker for Wisconsin after being down by 15. It might not always be pretty, but damn, this Badgers basketball team is tough.
— Jesse Temple (@jessetemple) November 24, 2022
Anyone take back the assertion that Wisconsin basketball can’t be fun?
— Matt Birschbach 🦬 (@Wigatta) November 24, 2022
I’m watching this Wisconsin game and I’ve really tried my best to stop being such a basketball snob, but this is really testing me.
— Eric Nehm (@eric_nehm) November 24, 2022
Whatever happens in OT, this is one of the greatest Wisconsin basketball performances I can remember, they were outscored multiple times in the last 25 minutes and battled back each time.
— M Bechtoldt 🏳️🌈 (@CavsMax13) November 24, 2022
I was saying 5th or 6th before this game but I think they will be very tough at home so maybe 3rd in the Big Ten after seeing them play for the first time. Wisconsin basketball
If the freshman average is 18, then who knows.
— Jeff Wills Greed is Good (@jeffwills08) November 24, 2022