The Badgers lost all three games without Tyler Wahl. Then they lost both games without Max Klesmit. Now with both back in the starting lineup, the Badgers still fell short, losing to Illinois 61-51 at home on Saturday.
It was a low-scoring affair early on with just a combined 36 points in the first half, and Illinois held to a 20-16 lead. Turnovers, poor shooting, and a lot of fouls were some contributing factors. Tyler Wahl racked up two fouls early and sat the final 15 minutes of the half.
In the second half, it was another slow start for the Badgers, with Illinois jumping out to a 32-20 lead. But then Wisconsin went on a 15-2 run, led by a flurry of 3s from Chucky Hepburn, Tyler Wahl, and Steven Crowl. But after a timeout from Illinois, the Illini jumped right back in going on a 19-2 run over the next six minutes to take back a commanding lead.
Chucky Hepburn ended up leading the team in scoring for the Badgers with 15 points and 5 rebounds. Max Klesmit also had a big game in his return with 12 points and 7 rebounds. Tyler Wahl had 9 points while Steven Crowl added 7.
It's a disappointing 6th loss in the last 7 games for the Badgers and 3rd loss in a row. Wisconsin needs to regroup and get some rest as their next matchup will be on Thursday on the road at Ohio State,