Milwaukee-Marquette Preview

Associated Press  |  Last updated December 21, 2011
Marquette stayed unbeaten for 10 games in 2011-12. The Golden Eagles have owned a perfect record against Milwaukee for nearly a century. Tenth-ranked Marquette looks to bounce back from its first loss and add to the nation's most lopsided record in any series when it hosts the Panthers at the Bradley Center on Thursday night. Marquette (10-1) rolled through its first 10 contests, winning by an average margin of more than 20 points while scoring 84.0 per game and shooting 49.7 percent. Most impressive was a 61-54 victory at then-No. 9 Wisconsin on Dec. 3. The Golden Eagles' run came to a halt in their second road game, a 67-59 defeat to LSU on Monday. Marquette scored the first 13 points but got outscored by 21 from that point on, shooting a season-worst 36.2 percent while allowing the Tigers to hit 23 of 43 from the field. "We're going to handle this loss as men,'' said senior forward Jae Crowder, whose 22 points, nine rebounds and three steals were team highs. "We're not going to handle this like immature people. We're going to handle it like men, go back, look at the things we did wrong and fix it. Hopefully guys step up to the plate and fix the problem.'' Marquette has never had a problem beating Milwaukee (9-3), winning all 38 meetings in a series that dates to the 1916-17 season. The 38 wins are the most without a loss in any series in Division I, and also represents the second-longest active winning streak by one opponent over another. Syracuse has defeated Colgate 46 consecutive times. Last season's meeting - a 75-72 road victory for the Golden Eagles on Nov. 27 - was the closest in the history of the series. Darius Johnson-Odom led all scorers with a career-high 29 points for Marquette, while Crowder had nine points and six rebounds in 20 minutes off the bench. The senior tandem of Johnson-Odom and Crowder is the nucleus of the Golden Eagles, with Johnson-Odom averaging 18.5 points and Crowder 18.0. Johnson-Odom scored 16 against LSU but also committed a season-high six turnovers in his return from a one-game suspension for violating team rules. Following consecutive losses - including a 60-54 home defeat to then-No. 14 Wisconsin on Dec. 13 - the Panthers got back on track Saturday with an 86-50 rout of Nebraska-Omaha, a program in transition to Division I. Senior forward Tony Meier led the way with 19 points and seven rebounds, while senior guard Kaylon Williams added 17 points and eight assists. Meier had 13 points and Williams finished with 12 against Marquette last season. Ja'Rob McCallum, now a starting junior guard, led the Panthers with 19 points off the bench.
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