Just like that of The Undertaker, the No. 1 Kentucky Wildcats’ streak is over. In a Final Four matchup for the ages, the scrappy No. 1 Wisconsin Badgers made clutch shots in the game’s final minutes to win 71-64 and earn a spot in the tournament final against the Duke Blue Devils on Monday.
Wisconsin entered the game as five-point underdogs against a Kentucky squad that had been near-unstoppable all season. Undefeated headed into tonight’s game, the Wildcats had more size, strength and overall skill than their opponents.
That is, until the Badgers showed that they would not back down in the fight.
After Kentucky got a 5-0 lead early, Wisconsin drove the lane to make high-percentage shots and communicated perfectly on some well-executed jumpers. Though Wisconsin had a lead as high as nine points at one point, Kentucky continued to run its signature dribble-drive offense and even had a four-point lead with six-and-a-half minutes remaining.
That’s when the Badgers turned on the afterburners and tied it up again with the help of a Sam Dekker jumper and a controversial Nigel Hayes layup that looked like it occurred after the shot clock had expired.
Shortly after the ensuing possession and a key stop on defense, Dekker iced the game with a three-pointer.
The rest is history.
Senior seven-footer Frank Kaminsky led his team with 20 points and 11 boards, with Dekker chipping in with 16 and Hayes with 12.
On Kentucky’s end, freshman sensation Karl-Anthony Towns led the Wildcats with 16 points and nine rebounds.
Badgers coach Bo Ryan and his boys will now face Hall-of-Famer Mike Krzyzewski and the high-scoring Blue Devils in the championship game on Monday in what’s sure to be a fantastic contest.
Be sure to tune into CBS at 9:18 pm (ET) to watch.
*Featured Photo (above) credit to Getty Images