LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) — Nigel Hayes had made just four of his previous 20 3-point attempts and hadn't even attempted one against Nebraska before his time came Thursday night. Hayes hit the go-ahead 3 with 18.4 seconds left in overtime and Ethan Happ blocked Tai Webster's shot on Nebraska's last try, giving No. 7 Wisconsin a 70-69 victory.
LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) — Nigel Hayes had made just four of his previous 20 3-point attempts and hadn't even attempted one against Nebraska before his time came Thursday night.
Hayes hit the go-ahead 3 with 18.4 seconds left in overtime and Ethan Happ blocked Tai Webster's shot on Nebraska's last try, giving No. 7 Wisconsin a 70-69 victory.
"As Ethan and I like to say to one another, big players make big-time plays," Hayes said. "I'll never lose confidence in myself. I could have missed my last 30 3s and I knew I was going to make that one."
Nebraska's Michael Jacobson forced overtime with his 3 just ahead of the buzzer, tying the game at 58-all.
Hayes scored 18 of his 20 points after halftime for the Badgers (21-3, 10-1 Big Ten), who won their eighth straight and 17th of their last 18.
Zak Showalter made 4 of 6 3s and finished with 15 points, and Bronson Koenig added 12 for Wisconsin.
Webster had 19 points and Glynn Watson Jr. added 15 for the Huskers (10-14, 4-8), who have lost eight of their last nine.
"I thought it was a gritty effort by our team," Nebraska coach Tim Miles said. "I never questioned their resolve and their heart. It seems like we do just enough to lose."
Webster made two free throws to put Nebraska in front 69-67 with 1:11 to play. Koenig missed a shot on the other end and Nebraska's Ed Morrow got the rebound and was fouled.
Morrow missed the two free throws, and Hayes' 3-pointer off a play designed for him put the Badgers up a point.
"I watch him at practice when we do our drills, and he'll drill five, six, seven, eight in a row," Badgers coach Greg Gard said. "If he has to take a timely one, and important one ... obviously he was able to do that and deliver."
Webster tried a shot from underneath with 3.3 seconds left, but Happ blocked it, got the rebound and was able to call time out before falling out of bounds.
"I just saw the ball," Happ said, "so I went for it and got a block and was lucky enough the ref heard me call time out."
Nebraska couldn't get off another shot.
The Huskers took their first lead when Isaiah Roby made a steal and went for a layup to make it 50-49 with 5:10 to play.
The Badgers couldn't get the lead back until Hayes bounced in a shot from underneath with 14 seconds left to make it 58-55.
Instead of fouling on Nebraska's final play of regulation, and sending the Huskers to the line for two free throws, the Badgers let the possession play out, with Jacobson swishing his 3 from the wing with one-tenth of a second showing.
Wisconsin: The Big Ten-leading Badgers shot just 36.5 percent and were outrebounded 50-37, but they were able to win for the eighth time in 11 games away from Madison and stay 1 1/2 games ahead of Purdue.
Nebraska: The Huskers were trying for their first win over a top 10 opponent since knocking off the Badgers in Lincoln in March 2014, but their 22 turnovers and 15-of-24 shooting from the free throw line weren't going to get it done.
Nebraska's Morrow played for the first time after sitting out seven straight games with a foot problem. He was the first player off the bench and had 13 rebounds to go with five points in 26 minutes. He also had five turnovers.
"I felt I could have been more productive," he said. "I was a little timid coming out. Some plays I made I wish I could take back."
Happ, the conference player of the week three straight weeks, had difficulty handling the double-teams Nebraska threw at him. He was 3 of 9 from the field and had eight points. He did have 14 rebounds and the big block at the end.
Gard said Happ hadn't struggled since being held to seven points and getting off just five shots against Creighton, which is 50 miles from Lincoln in Omaha.
"Maybe it's something when we end up in the Cornhusker state, it brings out that," Gard said. "They were aggressive with him. He didn't handle it well early."
Wisconsin hosts Northwestern on Sunday.
Nebraska hosts Penn State on Tuesday.
Follow Eric Olson on Twitter @ericolson64