MADISON, Wis. (AP) — Micah Potter scored 20 points and Aleem Ford added 12 to lead No. 12 Wisconsin to an 85-48 non-conference victory over short-handed No. 23 Louisville on Saturday in a rescheduled ACC/Big Ten Challenge game.
The Cardinals, playing their first game since Dec. 1 after team activities were suspended due to coronavirus issues within the program, were without leading scorer Carlik Jones. The graduate transfer point guard, averaging 17.3 points, traveled with the team, but didn’t play.
Louisville (4-1), playing its first road game, originally had been scheduled to play at Wisconsin on Dec. 9.
Trevor Anderson added 11 points and Brad Davison 10 for Wisconsin (6-1), which rolled to a 44-18 halftime lead.
David Johnson had 12 points and Quinn Slazinski 11 for the Cardinals.
The Badgers gained control early with 16 consecutive points, capping the run at 25-4 when Davison was fouled on a 3-pointer and added the free throw.
Louisville, which started two freshmen and three sophomores, went almost nine minutes without scoring, missing 11 shots and committing six turnovers over that span.
Wisconsin relied on its 3-point shooting to extend the lead to 44-18 at the half. D’Mitirk Trice put the Badgers up 6-0 with a pair of 3-pointers. Wisconsin finished the half 10 of 17 beyond the arc, including three each by Trice and Davison.
Wisconsin led comfortably throughout the second half. Anderson’s 3-pointer capped a 13-0 run that put the Badgers up 80-38 with 3:40 remaining.
The Badgers shot 54.4 percent, making 31 of 57 shots, including 16 of 25 from three-point range. Wisconsin also scored 19 points off 18 Louisville turnovers.
Wisconsin’s victory gives the Big Ten a 7-5 lead in the ACC/Big Ten challenge and enables them to clinch it.
Louisville: The youthful Cardinals need the leadership and experience of Jones as they rebound from the lengthy coronavirus-related hiatus.
Wisconsin: The Badgers have benefited from continuing to play with victories over Rhode Island and Loyola in games added to the scheduled after other games were canceled due to COVID situations.
Louisville is at Pittsburgh on Tuesday.
Wisconsin hosts Nebraska on Tuesday.
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