Rapid Reaction: Wisconsin finishes with disastrous performance in season-ending upset to Iowa State
Wisconsin is out of the NCAA Tournament after posting a horrific performance Sunday afternoon. At the final buzzer, 11-seed Iowa State had pulled off the 54-49 upset of the 3-seed Badgers.
The issues were plentiful for Wisconsin but a familiar opponent proved to be deadly for the Badgers. Gabe Kalscheur – a former Minnesota player who transferred to the Cyclones – exploded for 22 points on 10-for-19 shooting. Kalscheur averaged 9.1 points per game this season.
The big issue for Wisconsin was a disastrous performance on the offensive end of the floor. The Badgers shot an unsightly 30.4% from the floor while going an unthinkable 2-for-23 (9.1%) from 3-point range.
Johnny Davis led Wisconsin with 17 points but that is far from the full story. Davis shot 4-for-15 from the field and was 0-for-7 from 3-point range. Brad Davison finished with 12 points but dealt with foul trouble in the second half.
Along with the shooting, Wisconsin never found a groove while turning the ball over 17 times against the Cyclones. Making matters even worse, Iowa State was able to pull off the upset while shooting 34.5% from the field.
Wisconsin did lose starting guard Chucky Hepburn in the first half. Hepburn went down with an apparent ankle injury and was later seen in a walking boot and crutches to start the second half. While Hepburn’s absence definitely disrupted the offense, that alone cannot explain the disastrous performance.
After landing in the Midwest Region as a 3-seed, Wisconsin had the chance to play close to home in Milwaukee for the first two rounds. A trip to the Sweet 16 seemed destined to come to fruition for the Badgers. Now, Wisconsin must dwell on a particularly ugly exit from March Madness.