Panthers Advance With Impressive Win Over Valparaiso
March 8, 2014
GREEN BAY, Wis. - Jordan Aaron scored 20 points to lead four players in double figures and the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee led from start to finish in a 74-57 win over Valparaiso Friday in a Horizon League Tournament second round game at the Resch Center.
The Panthers (19-13) will play top-seeded Green Bay in a semifinal matchup Saturday at 8:30 p.m. on ESPNU.
Milwaukee, playing with high energy from the outset, scored 15 of the first 17 points of the game and never really looked back. The Panthers outrebounded the Crusaders (18-15), 41-19, including 19-0 on the offensive glass.
"I thought our guys put everything on the floor for that 40 minutes," Milwaukee head coach Rob Jeter said. "The key for us was that start. We came out and were really aggressive and made some shots."
Alec Peters had 18 points to lead Valpo, which had beaten Milwaukee easily twice during the regular season.
But Milwaukee turned the tables this time, hitting the Crusdaers hard in the first four minutes of the game before putting things on ice by making 24-of-27 free throws in the second half.
"I am very proud of what we did tonight," Tiby said. "We all were talking in the locker room that it's hard to beat us three times in a row. We came out with that fire and with that passion that I know we're all capable of. It was just great to see how we came together as a unit and played so well on defense."
"Our guys - they don't lack confidence, that's for sure," Jeter said. "They just want to keep playing. I think there was a lot of respect for Valpo and what they had done to us in the first two games. They really spent a little extra time with film and a little extra time trying to really understand. I think the effort was there, and I think the execution was pretty good, too."
The 15-2 start included three-pointers from four different players along with a three-point play from Tiby. Milwaukee's offense went quiet much of the rest of the way but its defense did not let up. The Panthers still led 22-12 with 4:40 remaining and went up 29-19 on an Arians three with 35 seconds left. Milwaukee then led 31-22 at the break.
Valpo pulled to within six early in the second half but would never get any closer. The lead hit 42-30 on an Aaron three with 13:35 remaining and Milwaukee went up 48-33 on a basket by Moore with 11:21 remaining.
Valpo again pulled within eight at 54-46 but a Kelm three-point play on the next possession answered that charge. A jumper by Aaron with 2:50 left pushed the lead back to 13 and the Panthers didn't look back.