The No. 4 ranked Wisconsin Badgers (3-1) suffered their first loss of the season to in-state rival Marquette (3-1), 67-65, in Milwaukee tonight. Despite taking the lead on three different occasions in the final 1:09, the Badgers could not close out the Golden Eagles, who won on a tip-in at the buzzer.
Not to blame the refs, but I watched them for the full 40 minutes tonight in the UW game.
Wisconsin was plagued by fouls all night, leading to 28 Marquette free throw attempts. In the second half alone, 9:12 went off the clock between Marquette fouls.
On offense, the Badgers looked like a veteran team coming up in the clutch in the final minutes of the game. Despite trailing for most of the second half, they didn’t panic, got to the foul line and made timely shots to stay within striking distance and eventually taking the lead.
The last sequence will be magnified and I’ll get to that in a moment, but the reality is the Badgers didn’t get a stop in the game’s final six possessions.
Outside of a nice stretch early and a flurry late, UW just didn’t look like themselves tonight. Could it have been to the officials putting them in foul trouble early in the game? Sure. But UW does have depth.
On a night when you don’t shoot the ball particularly well (37.5%) and don’t take great care of the ball (10 turnovers on 66 possessions), all of the little opportunities add up.
Going back to the last sequence. Ignore the fact of whether the “block” on D’Mitrik Trice was the correct call or not….which it wasn’t. Wisconsin failed to control what they could control.
Time and score — as poorly as the game was officiated, you can’t put the game in the officials hands there. It should have been a no-call or a charge in my opinion.
With 0.9 seconds left and D.J. Carlton not even looking at the rim, it’s not worth the risk taking if you’re D’Mitrik Trice. Carlton probably doesn’t even get a shot off if Trice just gets out of his way.
The one bright note from tonight, true freshman Johnny Davis played 30 minutes off the bench, scoring 12 points on 4-of-7 shooting with six rebounds and a steal. He consistently got to the rim and was aggressive and didn’t settle.
The Badgers will host Louisville (4-0) at the Kohl Center on Wednesday, December 9, in the Big Ten/ACC matchup. Tip-off is set for 6:15 PM (CT) and will be televised on ESPN.