The Badgers got embarrassed on national television for the second straight week, losing to Iowa 85-65, giving the Hawkeyes their second Big Ten win of the year. Wisconsin drops to 3-5 in Big Ten play.
After looking improved offensively and defensively last time out against Illinois, the Badgers seemed to take a step back against the Hawkeyes. The Badgers didn’t force much resistance for the Hawkeye big men, with Luka Garza and Tyler Cook combined for 34 points. It didn’t help matters that the Badgers shot just 22 percent from beyond the arch.
Ethan Happ got his numbers on Tuesday night with 21 points and 10 rebounds, but he struggled finishing inside and had four turnovers. Khalil Iverson added 17 points. Happ and Iverson didn’t get much support from the Badgers other consistent scorers in Brevin Pritzl and Brad Davison, as the duo was 4/17 combined.
Rough starts have plagued the Badgers all year, and tonight wasn’t any different. Iowa started the game out on a 9-0 run with Luka Garza destroying the Badgers on the offensive boards on his way to seven quick points. Wisconsin started out 0/7 from the field, before Iverson broke the drought.
Iverson kept the Badgers in the game single-handedly, scoring 13 points on 6/8 shooting in the first half, and one of his missed shots was from beyond the arch with the shot clock expiring. Charles Thomas played some good minutes on the offensive end, hitting a baseline jumper and a bucket inside, but struggled on the defensive end.
The Badgers trailed the entire first half, but they cut down the lead to four points late in the half before Isaiah Moss hit a three and a floater to close out the half, stretching Iowa’s lead back up to nine at halftime, 37-28.
Iowa started out the second half on a 13-4 run, highlighted by a beautiful alley-oop from Moss to Cook. Cook would later manhandle Illikainen down low for another finish. Things went from bad to worse when Garza stepped out for a three and netted it.
Iowa’s big night would continue as Wisconsin’s offense continued to plummet. Bohannon hit a tough contested jumper the next possession down, Moss hit a wide open three off of a nice pass from Bohannon for his tenth assist, giving him a double-double. The three increased Iowa’s lead to 18, their biggest lead to that point.
Charles Thomas had a few more moments in the second half, grabbing an offensive rebound and scoring a bucket, and he slammed a fastbreak dunk home. Thomas finished with a season-high 10 points, and was one of the lone bright spots for the Badgers on Tuesday night other than Iverson’s spectacular first half.
Up next, it doesn’t get any easier for the Badgers as they play #6 Michigan State in East Lansing on Friday.