On Sunday against Maryland, the Badgers came back from a seven-point deficit at halftime to win the game. On Thursday night, the Badgers were down 13 points, 44-31, at halftime despite shooting 7/15 from beyond the arc in the first half. Wisconsin went just 2/9 on two-point field goals.
After the half, the Badgers never made the game a contest in one of their most disheartening efforts of the year, as the Buckeyes truly dominated both halves.
Wisconsin has now dropped three of its last four. It’s hard to justify this loss for the Badgers, as Ohio State came into the game on a three-game losing streak, most recently losing to Nebraska. In reality, the 83-73 point final score was closer than the actual game was. Ohio State’s largest lead was 20 points.
Ohio State lit it up tonight from three. As a team, the Buckeyes shot 10/16 from distance and also shot 23/27 from the free throw line. The Badgers never had enough offense to keep up.
Bronson Koenig started his first game after missing the Michigan game and coming off the bench against Maryland and did much of the heavy work. Koenig did most of the work for the Badgers finishing with a career-high tying 27 points on only 15 shots. He hit five threes, with four of them coming in the first half. Koenig’s fourth three of the night broke Ben Brust’s career total of three-pointers in Wisconsin history.
Ohio State received monster first halves from Jae’Sean Tate and C.J. Jackson. Tate totaled a double-double in the first half with 13 points and 10 rebounds. Eight Buckeyes contributed in the scoring column during the first half. C.J. Jackson led the team with 18 points on 4/4 shooting from three. Tate finished with 15 points and 12 rebounds.
The Buckeyes’s bench contributed 32 points. JaQuan Lyle had 17 points and four assists off the bench. Ethan Happ only had four points on five shots. Nigel Hayes only had seven points on six shots. Zak Showalter never scored.
Vitto Brown and D’Mitrik Trice were the only other Badgers who gave Koenig much help. Brown hit three triples, totaling nine points. D’Mitrik Trice was the only other Badger in double figures in the scoring column with 14 points.
The loss puts the Badgers in trouble for the Big Ten race. Wisconsin now has four losses, and Purdue sits atop the standings with a 12-3 conference record and one game lead over the Badgers. Purdue beat Wisconsin head-to-head earlier this season.
Wisconsin plays at Michigan State on Sunday afternoon at 3:00pm CT in a must-win game to stay in striking distance of Purdue.