Coming into Monday night’s college basketball game, both the Wisconsin Badgers and Penn State Nittany Lions were in desperate need of a win. Wisconsin had dropped three straight in the absence of forward Tyler Wahl while Penn State was looking to finally build some momentum after destroying Indiana at home.
Wisconsin Basketball Survives, 63-60
Penn State jumped on the Wisconsin basketball team early, but the Badgers came out strong in the second half. Steven Crowl was too much for Penn State down the stretch, totaling 21 points and gathering 11 rebounds. Wisconsin held Penn State scoreless for the last two-and-a-half minutes and was able to gut out their fourth Big Ten basketball victory of the season.
For Wisconsin, they get a much-needed victory at home, as they have three of their next four games on the road. With a 4-3 conference record, the Badgers still have an outside chance to finish atop the Big Ten.
For Penn State, they have now lost 19 straight games in Madison, with their last win coming in 1995. They return home to face Nebraska before going on the road to face off with 23rd-ranked Rutgers.
Badgers’ Defense Needs Work | Wisconsin Basketball
Penn State came into the game as one of the top three-point shooting teams in Big Ten basketball and the country. While the Nittany Lions were able to shoot 40% from deep on 8/20 shooting, they should have hit more. The Badgers had trouble all night staying in front of Penn State, especially down the stretch.
Defensively, the flaws were obvious for Wisconsin basketball tonight. The lack of communication and/or court awareness led to multiple players closing out on the same player, leaving other shooters wide open on the perimeter. While their shortcomings didn’t come back to bite them tonight, they certainly will against the better teams they’ll face as the season progresses.
Seth Lundy Disappears
One of the biggest reasons for Penn State’s recent success has been the play of senior guard Seth Lundy. Lundy is one of the best shooters in Big Ten basketball, shooting just under 43% from deep and putting up 25 points in Penn State’s last game against Indiana.
On Tuesday night, Lundy disappeared completely. Not only did Lundy only score two points, he racked up four fouls and two turnovers. While Lundy can’t be expected to score at will every night, the fact that he took just three total shots was inexcusable. For as good as Andrew Funk and Jalen Pickett can be, Penn State can’t get far if Lundy isn’t involved in the offense.