Here is my first attempt at liveblogging - today is the Sweet 16 match up between UW Milwaukee and my beloved Illinois Fighting Illini. I plan on making an entry after every TV timeout, which is 16, 12, 8, and 4 minutes, and, of course at halftime and the end.
15:44 Illinois 14, UWM 12 - Holy cow what a start! UWM got a few fast break points and a few threes but are unable to stop us - we have two threes also. I really don't think UWM will keep up this pace - once their shots stop falling they will have to play some "D" and will start to get tired. I guarantee their bench isn't as deep as ours.
10:32 Illinois 21, UWM 15 - As predicted, UWM has iced up. The crowd is definitely into it. Illinois has missed some shots too, though. If we can keep UWM in a halfcourt game, it seems that they have problems running their offense.
6:18 Illinois 27, UWM 23 - A little back and forth but UWM is eating our lunch on fast breaks. They are leaking one man every time we shoot the ball and have at least 10 points from it so far. Eliminate that and we will be fine. Our offense has cooled off a bit. Our halfcourt defense looks great.
3:38 Illinois 29 UWM 25 - Looks like we are in for a game. More fast break layups for UWM - I don't understand why we aren't getting back on defense. Whenever we are in the halfcourt game we are dominating them. Luther Head is limping bigtime.
Halftime Illinois 39 UWM 32 - We pulled away a bit by playing some great defense. Dee Brown has had a great half as has Deron Williams. Again, when we are in the halfcourt game, UWM has no chance. Hats off to UWM for hustling, pressing and getting easy points on the fast break.
15:22 Illinois 51 UWM 39 - UWM played some poor defense to start the second half, allowing the Illinois guards some open shots. Deron Williams is playing an unbelievable game. We are now getting back on defense - again, when in the halfcourt game UWM has serious problems. They have no depth it appears, so later in the game, we should be fresher since our coach liberally substitutes with quality players.
11:43 Illinois 58 UWM 45 - UWM, it seems, has resorted to bombing threes now. I think they have realized that they cannot stand up to us in the halfcourt game. Not a bad strategy. We are shooting very well and are getting good shots to boot. I think maybe UWM is getting a bit tired.
7:30 Illinois 64 UWM 51 - UWM put on their press and it definitely had Illinois flustered for a while. We have wasted a few timeouts but no turnovers as of yet. However, our guards, especially Deron Williams are coming through. Williams and Dee Brown both hit big threes. We need to keep the foot on the gas and put these guys away.
3:56 Illinois 70 UWM 61 - Deron Williams got his fourth foul and Luther Head has four too. We are doing a good job working the shot clock down but our shots are not good. We played poor defense for two series and gave up a two and a three. They are not going to give up - we have to beat them. They are definitely going to bomb the threes so look out.
Final: Illinois Fighting Illini 77 University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee Panthers 63
Our guards were just too much for them. Hats off to the panthers, though. They played tough and hustled the whole game. Tucker was unstoppable. What a great season we have had. Elite Eight!!!! Oskee Wow Wow!!!!