Wisconsin survives against Penn State on late-defensive stops

Wisconsin center Steven Crowl had 21 points on 9 of 16 shooting as the Badgers held off Penn State 63-60 on Tuesday night at the Kohl Center.

Penn State had two chances to tie the game, but senior guard Andrew Funk missed both attempts, and Penn State is now 0-19 at the Kohl Center with their last win coming in 1995.

Wisconsin also got back senior forward Tyler Wahl who had missed the previous three games with an ankle injury. Wahl contributed 10 points, five rebounds, and two assists. Wahl talked about having to sit on the bench for the past three games.

“The first two games it wasn’t too hard to watch. I feel like we were doing our thing, and we just didn’t pull it out; a few late stretches where we didn’t close it out.”

“That Indiana game was tough to watch but I just feel like it just slipped out of our hands we let it get out of control but it was good to take that as a learning experience.” Wahl said

Wisconsin shot 42 percent from the field and went 7 of 17 from the three-point line. Wisconsin isn’t a strong three-point shooting team, as they shoot 36.3 percent, but getting Wahl back was key because it allowed them to become more balanced offensively and not rely on the three-point shot they’ve had to do in the past three games in his absence.

Wisconsin came into this game on a three-game losing streak; so how were they able to get back in the win column tonight?

Late-defensive stops at the end. Point guard Chucky Hepburn took a charge with 53 seconds left on Penn State’s Jalen Pickett and Wisconsin held Penn State scoreless for the last two minutes of the game.

OTHER NOTES:

Freshman guard Connor Essegian got his first start tonight and picked up 10 points, on 4 of 7 shooting and 2 of 4 from the field in 34 minutes of action. Head Coach Greg Gard said Essegian said Essegian earned the opportunity to start.

The status that the game against Northwestern will be played on Saturday is uncertain. The Wildcats had to cancel their game against Iowa on Tuesday due to a COVID-19 outbreak within the Northwestern program.

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