It was a great win for Wisconsin basketball yesterday. The Badgers defeated #3 Marquette 75-64 at home yesterday. Wisconsin led the game for over 39 minutes and led this game by as much as 15 points. It was a great crows and a great resume win. Here are three key takeaways from the win yesterday.
Max Klesmit Put Wisconsin Basketball on his Back in the First Half
Like many Badgers fans, I get frustrated with how passive Max Klesmit can be. He is a shooter and I trust him to take any shot he wants and finds. However, his role is to defend the opposing team’s best perimeter scorer.
Games like yesterday is when Klesmit comes alive and did he ever yesterday. Klesmit scored all 21 of his points in the first half. Klesmit is looked at as the fifth option to score on this team. When he’s shooting well, the stress and pressure on the opposing team increases. While Klesmit didn’t score in the second half, he did everything he was suppose to do early.
Wisconsin Basketball Survived an Early Second Half Punch
Despite a 13 point lead at half, it felt like Marquette was going to go on the run in the second half. They went on a run and did it right away. The Golden Eagles trimmed the lead to 52-51. Give the Badgers credit for answering the punch and getting the job done. I am not sure last year’s team does that.
These runs and punches matter later in the season. Outside of Purdue and Arizona, Marquette might be the best team on the Wisconsin basketball schedule. This shows the Badgers can take punches and not let it phase them.
Wisconsin Basketball Was the More Physical Team
The theme over this four game winning streak is Wisconsin has dominated the glass and been the more physical team, especially since the Providence game. The Badgers won the rebounding battle yesterday by 15 and was +8 on the offensive glass. Steven Crowl has been the better post player and has made it a point to win at the rim.
Marquette committed 21 fouls compared to Wisconsin’s 13. I think the physicality had something to do with that. The Badgers won of pace of play and it made Marquette defend them 20 seconds into the shot clock. I don’t think that is something Marquette is comfortable with and it played a huge role in players getting into foul trouble. The Golden Eagles only have two post players and it showed.
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