Here's something that doesn't happen too often: Wisconsin losing to UW-Milwaukee.
Well, it happened Wednesday night, as the Badgers suffered their second upset loss at the Kohl Center this season, falling to the in-state Panthers, 68-67, snapping a 22-game winning streak against Bo Ryan's former team.
In fact, it was Ryan's first loss to UW-Milwaukee since leaving that job and taking over the Wisconsin program ahead of the 2001-02 season.
The Badgers led by as many as 15 in the first half and went to the break with an 11-point lead. Wisconsin led by 12 a little more than five minutes into the second half when UW-Milwaukee took off on a 13-3 run to get the deficit down to two. It stayed close from there, the Badgers' lead growing no bigger than five, and the Panthers tied the game at 60 with about three minutes to play.
The Panthers turned a missed Bronson Koenig shot into a bucket to take the lead, and the teams traded two free throws apiece after that. Inside of a minute to play, with the Badgers down two, Vitto Brown was called for an offensive foul, giving the ball back to the Panthers, but they didn't do anything with it. Nigel Hayes went to the free-throw line with a chance to tie the game with 24 seconds to play, but Hayes — who scored 32 points on the night — missed both attempts from the charity stripe. UW-Milwaukee hit two more free throws to make it a four-point lead, but Koenig answered with a 3-pointer with 13 seconds left to bring Wisconsin within a point. Then the Badgers had a chance to win the game when the Panthers traveled on the ensuing possession, but Koenig's shot missed.
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Wisconsin shot just 36.4 percent from the field, which was still better than the 35.8-percent mark by UW-Milwaukee. But the numbers were disparate in the second half, the Panthers shooting 42.3 percent to the Badgers' 29.2-percent clip.
Hayes' 32 points led all scorers, and 12 of those points came from the free-throw line, though he missed seven free throws. Koenig finished with 16 points, and Ethan Happ had 10, turning in a double-double with 15 rebounds.
The Badgers entered the game with a 31-1 all-time record against the Panthers, though that's now down to 31-2. It's the second upset loss at home this season for Wisconsin, which dropped its season-opener to Western Illinois.
It's been a bumpy start to the season for Ryan's Badgers, who are just 6-4 through 10 games. Next up is Marquette on Saturday.