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February 15, 2013

’Cats just miss upset

COLUMBUS, Ohio — In the record book, it’ll look just like all the other losses at Ohio State.

But it shouldn’t. There should maybe be an asterisk.

Even Northwestern’s players were proud of what they almost accomplished Thursday night.

“We only have seven scholarship players — and a full house and a good team we’re playing against,” Kale Abrahamson said. “We played with a lot of toughness for 37 minutes. It’s just those last 3 minutes that we’re going to regret.”

Deshaun Thomas scored 11 of his 22 points in the last 7 minutes and the 13th-ranked Buckeyes used a late 12-0 run to hold off the short-handed Wildcats 69-59.

“We went to a 2-3 zone, we only had a couple of days (to prepare),” coach Bill Carmody said. “We hadn’t played that in a few years, but I thought that was the best thing we could do to stay out of foul trouble. It was effective for most of the game. It was tied and then Thomas sort of took over at the end of the game.”

It was Ohio State’s 32nd consecutive home win against the Wildcats, dating back to Feb. 24, 1977 — a couple weeks before the original “Star Wars” hit movie theaters.

But it certainly didn’t come easy.

“I’m not one for big meetings and speeches,” Carmody said. “I just said, ‘You guys have been in a lot of situations where you’re underdogs and no one thought you had a chance. Go out there and play your tails off and if you do that, you get people’s respect. I thought they did that.”

Minnesota 58, No. 20 Wisconsin 53: Andre Hollins hit the go-ahead 3-pointer midway through overtime to finish with 21 points and lead Minnesota to a 58-53 victory.

It was third straight game Wisconsin went to overtime.

Austin Hollins added 11 points for the Gophers (18-7, 6-6 Big Ten), who held the Badgers without a basket for about 11 minutes until Jared Berggren’s putback with 10 seconds left in the extra period. Hollins went 4 for 4 from the free throw line over the final 18 seconds of overtime to seal it.

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