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Player Grades: Michigan State 83, Wisconsin 75

The Badgers (26-7, 12-6 B1G) put forth a valiant effort at a comeback, but in the end couldn't top Michigan State (25-8, 12-6 B1G) who defeated UW 83-75 in the semi-finals of the B1G Tournament. 

Wisconsin came out of the gates extremely lathargic and Sparty made them pay for it. Michigan State shot a scorching 57% from the field compared to Wisconsin's 39%. At one point, the Spartans held a 21 point lead, which was Wisconsin's largest defecit all season.

The Badgers battled back in the second half and outscored the Spartans 49-40 in the second period of play, but their dud of a first half was ultimately too much to overcome.

Enough with the chatter, let's jump right into the player grades.

Player Stats/Thoughts Grade

Ben Brust, G

11 points, 3-5 3pt FG, 3 reb, 1 ast

It was a quiet game from Brust offensively. He did hit a few big threes, but other than that, not much else. The Senior will have to step it up come the NCAA tourney if he wants to extend his Badger career a few more games.

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Nigel Hayes, F

2 points, 0-5 FGs, 2-5 FTs, 1 reb, 1 ast, 1 steal

This was Nigel's worst game in a while. Michigan State's length, speed and size on defense obviously bothered him. Adrein Payne schooled the Freshman a couple of times as well. Let's hope this doesn't crush his confidence.

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Traevon Jackson, G

10 points, 2-4 FGs, 5-6 FTs, 4 reb, 5 assists, 1 TO

Jackson had an under-the-radar good game. Although his offensive impact wasn't profound, he played solid defense and didn't turn the ball over. 

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Duje Dukan, F

4 minutes, 3 points, 1-1 FG, 1-1 FT

Duje came in and had a huge and one off of a pretty drive to the basket. He's been playing well lately, and is slowly developing into a respectable offensive weapon off of Bo Ryan's bench.

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Sam Dekker, F

11 points, 5-10 FGs, 7 reb, 2 TOs

Dekker did a good job in transition, getting a couple of big time slams, but disappeared in UW's half court action for a large portion in the second half. The Badgers need their star to be more engaged offensively in the NCAA's.

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Josh Gasser, G

9 points, 2-4 FGs, 2 reb, 1 ast, 1 stl

Although it doesn't show up in the box score, Gasser played a really good game. He was flying all over the place on defense and giving 100%. You have to love the guys effort and determination.

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Bronson Koenig, G

1 pt, 0-3 FG, 1-2 FT, 4 reb, 4 ast, 1 TO

Koenig cooled off after a red-hot shooting performance yesterday. He still played smart and efficiently on offense though, so I can't knock the Freshman's performance too harshly.

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Frank Kaminsky, F

28 points, 9-16 FGs, 8-8 FTs, 2 reb, 1 ast, 1 block

FRANK. THE. TANK. The Badgers would have gotten completely embarassed in this game if it weren't for Kaminsky carrying the offensive load. We can only hope Frank's high level of play will continue in the tournament. If it does, the Badgers are going to be a dangerous team.

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