The Ohio State basketball team couldn’t make a 3-point basket in the first half against Wisconsin, and it ultimately led to its downfall in a key 78-68 Big Ten loss up in Madison.
To give OSU some credit, it played much better on both ends of the floor in the second half after only scoring 27 points in the first twenty minutes and yielding 40 to the Badgers. A lot of Ohio State’s resurgence in the second half had to do with its start player, E.J. Liddell, finally finding his shot.
Liddell made just 1-of-5 shots in the first half for four points total but scored 14 points in the second half on 5-of-7 shooting, including 2-of-3 from beyond the arc. OSU got all the way to within five points of the Badgers in the second half, but it wasn’t enough.
It’s hard enough to win on the road, and even harder when you spot a quality opponent a 13-point halftime lead at their place. And it wasn’t even player of the year candidate Johnny Davis that did the Buckeyes in. Instead, it was Brad Davison and Tyler Wahl that led the Badgers with 25 and 20 points. Davis also finished in double figures with 14 points, but that came on 4-of-18 shooting.
Still, the game was there for the taking. Had Ohio State shot better from beyond the arc (3-of-19), or gotten the better benefit of the whistles at the hometown referee-friendly Kohl Center, the outcome could have been different. Wisconsin shot 20 free throws to just 10 for the Buckeyes.
With the loss, the Buckeyes drop to 4-2 in the Big Ten and 10-4 overall. They will next take on Penn State at home on Sunday. Ohio State will need to get back in the winning column if it still holds out hope of staying in the Big Ten race.
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