Wisconsin defeats Pitt 47-43, advances to NCAA second round

Wisconsin defeats Pitt 47-43, advances to NCAA second round
ST LOUIS, MO - MARCH 18: Michael Young #2 of the Pittsburgh Panthers handles the ball against Vitto Brown #30 of the Wisconsin Badgers in the second half of their game during the first round of the 2016 NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament at Scottrade Center on March 18, 2016 in St Louis, Missouri. (Photo by Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images)

Wisconsin (21-12) is victorious after a nail-biting 47-43 win over Pitt (21-12) Friday night. 

The Badgers were off to a rocky start when Pitt went on a 13-3 run to begin the game.

Although the shots weren’t falling, Wisconsin was able to catch up to 22-16 by halftime. 

Ethan Happ led the team with 15 points and 9 total rebounds. 

Starting guard Bronson Koenig only totaled 2 points. Koenig was 1-8 from the field and 0-2 from the three point line.

Wisconsin made 32 percent of their field goals.

Pitt had some shooting difficulties of their own. As a team, the Panthers shot around 38 percent, and the Badgers held Pitt’s leading scorer, Michael Young, to six points. Jamel Artis led the way for the Panthers with 13 points.

The Badgers came out hot in the second half and took a 38-36 lead briefly late in the game with 5:19 left on the clock, thanks to a three pointer made by Vitto Brown.

The team was 4-19 on three pointers, with forward Vitto Brown responsible for three of those. Brown finished second for the evening with 11 points.

It was neck and neck for the final five minutes of the game, with the Badgers gradually pulling away with the lead.

Nigel Hayes shot 3-17 and 0-6 from beyond the arc. But he went 6-8 from the free throw line, which ultimately sealed the game at 47-43 with just under two seconds to go. 

Wisconsin advances to the second round of the NCAA Tournament. They will play either Xavier or Weber State Sunday at approximately 7:40 p.m. Central time on TNT.