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Wisconsin wins 20th straight home game

Feb 11, 2007 - 12:10 AM MADISON, Wisconsin (Ticker) -- Alando Tucker eclipsed 2,000 points and Wisconsin won another home game.

Tucker scored 21 points and became the second player in school history to surpass 2,000 as the fourth-ranked Badgers extended their home winning streak to 20 games with a 74-62 victory over Iowa in a battle of Big Ten Conference rivals.

The game matched Iowa's Adam Haluska and Tucker - the conference's top two scorers. Haluska finished with 16 points, five below his season average.

Tucker needed just one point to reach 2,000 and got that quickly, hitting a jumper 13 seconds into the game. He is now at 2,020 points. Michael Finley is the school's all-time leader with 2,147 points.

"Michael was a great player who helped build the program," Tucker said. "I'm thrilled to be one of only two players to reach the milestone. But the important thing is we keep winning."

The 6-6 senior has scored at least 20 points in each of his last five games and is averaging 19.9 points this season.

Wisconsin (24-2, 10-1 Big Ten) remains tied for first place in the conference with Ohio State, which beat Purdue earlier in the day. The Badgers visit Ohio State on February 25.

The loss snapped a three-game winning streak for Iowa (14-11, 6-5), which is in fourth place in the conference.

"Obviously, this is a very difficult place to play," Iowa coach Steve Alford said. "They are a very good defensive team and I didn't think we guarded the way we are capable of guarding."

Haluska had scored 33 and 34 points in back-to-back wins over Indiana and Minnesota, but made just 7-of-20 shots against the Badgers, who lead the Big Ten in scoring defense (57.7 points). The Hawkeyes shot just 37 percent (11-of-30) in the second half and 42 percent for the game.

Yet, Iowa held a 50-49 lead after freshman Tyler Smith completed a three-point play with 12:21 left in the second half.

The Badgers responded with a 13-1 run as Kammron Taylor hit a pair of 3-pointers, Brian Butch added a 3-pointer and a follow shot and Tucker connected on a jumper.

After a dunk by Iowa's Kurt Looby, Tucker hit another jumper to give the Badgers a 64-53 lead with 8:21 left.

"I thought we moved our feet better in the second half," Wisconsin coach Bo Ryan said. "With the depth that we have, we rotated and got things done defensively. It wasn't just one person. It was everybody."

The Hawkeyes went on a 9-3 run as Haluska made a layup and a jumper, pulling them within 67-62 with 2:38 remaining. But Iowa failed to score the rest of the way.

Marcus Landry connected on a 3-pointer with 2:03 remaining. Kammron Taylor converted two free throws and Tucker and Butch each made one free throw in the final 1:18.

Butch finished with 15 points and Taylor added 11.

Wisconsin made 8-of-17 shots from the arc while the Hawkeyes were just 3-of-13 from 3-point range.

Smith, Iowa's second-leading scorer at 15.8 points, was limited to eight points on 3-of-13 shooting before fouling out with 50 seconds left.