Indiana-Wisconsin Preview

Associated Press  |  Last updated February 25, 2014
Wisconsin's extended winning streak to start the season ended at Indiana. The Badgers find themselves faced with a similar situation again. With confidence growing, No. 14 Wisconsin attempts to continue its improved shooting as it goes for a sixth straight win Tuesday night against the visiting Hoosiers. The Badgers (22-5, 9-5 Big Ten) won their first 16 games of the season, rising to third in the AP poll. However, that run came to an end with a 75-72 defeat to Indiana (15-11, 5-8) on Jan. 14, snapping their 12-game winning streak in the series. That was the first of five losses in six games for Wisconsin, a stretch during which it shot 41.5 percent from the floor and 27.9 from 3-point range. The Badgers have since turned things around, winning five in a row while sinking 46.8 percent from the field and 39.2 from beyond the arc. Three of those victories - two on the road - have come against ranked opponents, including Saturday's 79-74 win at then-No. 15 Iowa. "Having the confidence to step up and take those shots is back. I think we had that at the start of the season. It kind of went away for a little bit, and now I think we have that back," forward Frank Kaminsky said. Kaminsky is looking to continue his own strong stretch. The junior scored 21 points against the Hawkeyes after he had 25 with 11 rebounds in a 75-62 win at then-15th-ranked Michigan State on Feb. 16. He connected on 19 of 29 field goals in those two games after making 44.4 percent and averaging 10.0 points over the previous seven. "He's literally taking the ball from the 3-point line and getting all the way to the basket," Indiana coach Tom Cream said of Kaminsky. "The shooting is there, the post-up is there, without question, but the driving game is something that obviously they are spending a lot of time on." Kaminsky had 11 points and nine boards against the Hoosiers last month, while Traevon Jackson scored a career-high 21. The guard, though, is averaging 9.1 points on 34.7 percent shooting in 10 games since. Bronson Koenig missed all four of his shots in the last meeting with Indiana, but the freshman guard is coming off a season-high 12 points on 5-of-7 shooting at Iowa. "He's a good player. You're going to see a lot more of him over the next few years," coach Bo Ryan said. The Badgers have won 11 straight at home against the Hoosiers, dating to a loss in their first-ever meeting at Kohl Center on Jan. 25, 1998. Indiana is looking to win back-to-back games for the first time since beating the Badgers. The team has dropped six of nine since that meeting, but snapped a four-game road skid with Saturday's 61-56 win at Northwestern. This is the first of three straight games against ranked opponents for the Hoosiers, who host No. 20 Iowa on Thursday and 22nd-ranked Ohio State on Sunday. Indiana has lost four of six to Top 25 foes this season despite Yogi Ferrell averaging 19.8 points in those games. He scored 25 against the Badgers in January, but the sophomore guard was held to 12 on Saturday.
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