The UW-Baraboo/Sauk County men’s basketball team ended its regular season with a bang on Saturday when the host Fighting Spirits defeated UW-Marathon County 85-78 in a Wisconsin Collegiate Conference Western Division game.
UW-Baraboo came into the game as the underdog, with a record of 7-11 compared to UW-Marathon’s 10-7. The Spirits ended a back-and-forth first half with a 3-pointer from Rhosean Burrage and a jumper from Josh Carter to enter halftime with a 45-42 lead.
UW-Baraboo’s Christian Webb drained one from beyond the arc to start the half, but 6-foot-6 UW-Marathon junior Jake Joslin put in a couple of easy buckets under the hoop. UW-Baraboo’s Andre Barry converted a three-point play moments later, but the Spirits started to turn over the ball, partly due to UW-Marathon’s trap defense.
UW-Baraboo started to take control when Webb scored back-to-back buckets, while junior Hudson Barsness recorded a putback off the glass. The Huskies were called for a technical foul several minutes in, but Barsness missed both free throws.
His teammates backed him up however, as Barry knocked down a 3 while Barsness redeemed himself with a nice move to the rim and the Spirits went up 68-62. The Huskies were able to get to the foul line a couple of times, but struggled to hit their free throws.
UW-Marathon threatened within the final few minutes with a 3-pointer and a three-point play to make it 82-78 with 55 seconds left, but Barsness soared in for a clutch bucket and the Spirits held onto the ball from there to take the game.
Webb scored 19 points to lead UW-Baraboo/Sauk County, followed by Barry (15), Barsness (14) and Abram Tatum (11). The Fighting Spirits will next host UW-Marshfield on Wednesday night to begin the postseason, and the winner will head to UW-Rock on Saturday for a chance to advance to play at the Wisconsin Collegiate Conference tournament on Feb. 24 at JustAGame Fieldhouse in Wisconsin Dells.