Panthers Ride Solid Effort To Impressive Win Over Davidson
Demetrius Harris

Demetrius Harris

Nov. 17, 2012

Box Score | BGN Extra


MILWAUKEE - Jordan Aaron had 23 points and Kyle Kelm buried a three-pointer with 2:30 remaining to give the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee the lead for good as the Panthers claimed a 73-68 win over Davidson Saturday night at the Klotsche Center.

The Panthers (2-1) trailed by seven early in the second half before rallying to knock off the Wildcats, who returned all five starters from last year's NCAA Tournament team.

Aaron scored 13 points in a row during a burst in the second half that took Milwaukee from a 41-34 deficit to a 56-53 lead. Davidson eventually reclaimed a 63-62 advantage with under three minutes left but Kelm answered with a step-back three on the next possession to catapult UWM to the win.

Demetrius Harris added 17 points, including the game-clinching free throws following a big defensive rebound, while Kelm pitched-in with 11. Plus, Thierno Niang had eight points and 11 rebounds.

J.P. Kuhlman had 16 points to lead Davidson.

Milwaukee's defensive effort was outstanding, as the Panthers limited the Wildcats to just 35.6 percent shooting for the game. And, Davidson made just 4-of-14 from beyond the arc after entering the game having made 22 three-pointers.

One week after losing a late lead at South Carolina, the Panthers were solid and steady in the closing minutes Saturday. Milwaukee hit all six of its free throws after taking the late lead, and Kelm also added a hoop on a strong drive, finishing with his left hand. Then, Harris closed the win out with a big rebound in traffic and a pair of free throws.

"That last rebound Demetrius Harris got really summed up how far we have come in a week. A week ago we didn't get that rebound. I've thought, every game for the most part this preseason, we've tried to take another step. Tonight I thought it was a huge step in that positive direction.

"I thought our guys played with some composure and I thought we had to trust some things. I didn't see us rattled much."

Not much was decided in the first 20 minutes. Davidson led by as many as five points in the early going but Milwaukee rallied to tie the game at 22. The Wildcats were able to restore as much as a four-point advantage before the Panthers rallied to within 31-30 at the break.

Davidson extended its lead out to 41-34 with 15:39 remaining when Kuhlman buried an open three. But Aaron single-handedly responded for UWM, scoring his team's next 13 points as Milwaukee went ahead 56-53.

"He's good. It's the things we saw when we were recruiting him," Jeter said of Aaron. "We saw a kid that could flourish in what we want him to do for us. We're trying to keep it simple for him - just get the ball downhill and make good decisions. I think what separates him is that he can pull up and shoot it a little bit."

The teams traded baskets over the next four minutes before Davidson claimed the advantage one fine time. But after Kelm knocked in his three from the right wing, the Panthers combined solid free throw shooting with clutch defense and rebounding to hang on for the win.

UWM now hits the road for its next four games, with three in the next week. The journey begins Monday night at Arkansas-Little Rock.



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