Badgers HoopCap: Happ Dominates Hoyas Big Men
Wisconsin Badgers move to the Maui Invitational final after a dominating performance against Georgetown winning 73-57 with a major second half. Badgers played one of their best halves of the season with great performances from Ethan Happ and Bronson Koenig.
Another strong night for Ethan Happ
After a slow start to the season, Ethan Happ found his mojo in Maui. Happ had another great game with 19 points and 15 rebounds controlling the paint against Georgetown’s small lineup. There wasn’t much wrong with Happ’s game tonight. Exciting for Badgers to know they have a true advantage when facing an undersized team.
Bronson Koenig might be the star of this team
All due respect to Nigel Hayes, but Bronson Koenig might be the true number one of this team. He’s already eclipsed 20 points or more in Wisconsin’s three games against high major teams. Koenig looks in complete control of the team even if he’s not an assist-first point guard. Time and again, the La Crosse native hits big shot after big shot. Big Ten might have selected the wrong Badger for Player of the Year.
Winning without the three
Badgers have been known for the last couple years to be a great three-point shooting team who at times can shoot too many threes, but that hasn’t been the case for Wisconsin in the last couple games. They only attempted 22 against Georgetown and made just five. This is quite the change from Creighton last week where Badgers attempted 39 threes. Greg Gard and his coaching staff has done a good job at shifting their offensive focus to more of a driving, mid-range team versus trying to beat teams from deep.
Khalil Iverson’s production will be huge this year
If Wisconsin is going to be a Final Four team, their bench needs to find a consistent scorer. For Tuesday night, Khalil Iverson was that guy. He provided 10 points with 7 rebounds off the bench in 20 minutes with some thunderous dunk. They need this kind of production from Iverson or one of the other bench players on a nightly basis.
Players of the Game
Happ (Wisconsin) L.J. Peak (Georgetown) – We already talked about Happ’s great game, and I really do think he’s going to be special for this team moving forward. L.J. Peak is somehow still playing basketball for Georgetown, and he had a good game with 18 points on 7-of-13 from the field. Peak was one of two double-digit scorers for Hoyas.
Wisconsin will face North Carolina in the Maui final. These two teams have met a few times in the NCAA Tournament with 2015 being the most recent matchup where Badgers eliminated Heels from the Sweet 16.