The Badgers took care of Georgetown in the second half on Tuesday night. Here’s three takeaways from the win.
Ethan Happ’s dominance
Other than fouling out with under a minute left in this one, Wisconsin big man Ethan Happ played a near perfect game in the team’s 73-57 victory over the Hoyas. The reigning Big Ten Freshman of the Year stuffed the stat sheet, with 19 points and 15 rebounds. Happ also shot 8 of 13 from the field, which is incredibly efficient down low, and his 15 rebounds were only six less than the entire Hoya team. Nigel Hayes and Bronson Koenig may get the most attention on the Badgers, but Happ is showing that he may be the team’s most important player offensively. He can obviously put up numbers, he has improved his post-move foray and you won’t see a harder-working, more efficient player on the court.
Bronson Koenig’s senior leadership
Bronson Koenig continues to show why he was named to the Preseason All-Big Ten Team. Not only did he put up 20 points and grab six rebounds as a point guard, but he also is demonstrating some of his hard work from the offseason. Like most games this year, Koenig got the team going on offense, and the team couldn’t really score without him in the first half. He focused on speed while working out in California in the offseason, and this shows as the senior point guard has added a driving dimension to his game that he did not quite have before. Koenig has always been very competitive, but is starting to lead more vocally as well with his teammates. He’s carrying this team through the first five games of the season.
Rebounding the difference
If you watched the game, it was pretty clear which of these teams was better at rebounding the ball on both ends. Wisconsin is a very fundamentally-sound team, but Georgetown is usually above average at picking up the boards. The Badgers’ 50-21 edge on the boards was a shocking development, as ESPN color commentary Jay Bilas pointed out. This included the Badgers winning in offensive rebounds, at a whopping 20 to just one for the Hoyas, as well as second-chance points, at 19-1. This factor of the game was clearly the biggest edge for Wisconsin tonight, proving to be the difference in the 73-57 victory.