(AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill). Wisconsin guard Josh Gasser, right, dribbles past North Carolina's Justin Jackson during the first half of a college basketball regional semifinal in the NCAA Tournament, Thursday, March 26, 2015, in Los Angeles.
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The Wisconsin Badgers are back in the Elite 8 for the second year in a row after beating 4th seeded North Carolina 79-72 in a West Region semifinal Thursday night.
Sam Dekker scored 23 points and had 10 rebounds. Frank Kaminsky had 19 points and Zak Showalter came off the bench in the second half to score six points and give the team a huge spark.
Wisconsin ended North Carolina's 11-game win streak in Sweet 16 games, which dated back to 1993.
The Badgers trailed 53-46 at one point before going on a 19-7 run to take a five-point lead. They clinched the game from the free throw line, finishing 20-23 for the game.
"This group never gets discouraged to the point where they get down on themselves or their teammates. And I've had a lot of teams like that. It's not like we haven't coached teams like that. But this group handles adversity as well as any team that I've coached," said head coach Bo Ryan.
"We have a veteran bunch. Everyone understands time and score. When you have leaders like Josh and Trae coming back and stepping up and really being a vocal leader out there. It's great to have so many voices that understand what needs to happen and what we need to do," said Kaminsky.
"We just tried to attack them right away. They got switched up a couple of times on those screens and that gave me a lane to the bucket. If I use my athleticism the way I should I tend to be able to get there. So I just tried to stay on the attack mode," said Dekker.
The Badgers will play for a trip to the Final Four on Saturday.
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