CHICAGO- After a tough win over the 13th-seeded Nebraska Cornhuskers in the Big Ten Tournament, the fourth-seeded Wisconsin Badgers fell to the top seed Michigan State Spartans, 67-55 at the United Center.
Overall, Wisconsin showed a lot of fight in the loss. The Badgers got behind big and early, but despite struggling with the speed of the Spartans, Wisconsin made it very tough defensively in the second half, keeping the underdog Badgers in the game.
In the end, it really just came down to shooting for the Badgers, who shot just 32% from the field and went 0/9 from long range in the second half.
Although the shots didn’t fall, point guard D’Mitrik Trice felt like there were still some positives to take away from Wisconsin’s offense in the last 20 minutes.
“It’s definitely a confidence booster there, not just for me but for this team. I think that we got some good looks, and the sets were working, too,” Trice said.
“That’s just something positive that we can look forward to and improve on, especially in this tournament where we are playing other teams that might not scout us as much or know our tendencies as well,” Trice added about the NCAA tournament.
Trice’s backcourt mate, sophomore Brad Davison, was disappointed after the loss, but felt that there was still some good to build on as the season progresses.
“Coach is big on momentum. We always talk about it, and obviously we didn’t get as much as we wanted, leaving without a Big Ten Championship,” Davison explained.
“But we showed a lot of toughness, we showed fight, we did a lot of things pretty well. We just couldn’t knock down shots.”
One Badger that did have some success from the field on Saturday was redshirt freshman Kobe King, who scored 13 points and shot 50% from the field.
Coach Greg Gard was understandably excited about that aspect, and shared that this is the Kobe King that Wisconsin expected to have on their roster.
“That’s big for us. That’s more of what we expected, and that needs to continue because of what he can add to this offense,” Gard said.
Wisconsin, now 23-10, will await their next opponent on Sunday during the Selection Show at 5:00.