Men’s Basketball: Buckeyes travel to Wisconsin, seek revenge against No. 20 Badgers

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Second-year center Felix Okpara (34) throws down a slam dunk during Ohio State’s 71-60 loss to Wisconsin at the Schottenstein Center Jan. 10. Credit: Caleb Blake | Photo Editor

In the Buckeyes’ first meeting with the Badgers Jan. 10, Wisconsin bested Ohio State 71-60 in front of its home fans.

Now, the Buckeyes are set to face off against the Badgers again, but this time in Madison, Wisconsin.

The Ohio State men’s basketball team (14-10, 4-9 Big Ten) will look to win its second straight game and overcome a 16-game road losing streak as it’s set to clash with the struggling No. 20 Wisconsin Badgers (16-8, 8-5 Big Ten) Tuesday at the Kohl Center.

The Buckeyes are coming off a thrilling, 79-75 double-overtime victory against Maryland on Saturday as Ohio State went back-and-forth with the Terrapins for all 50 minutes of game action, before narrowly escaping with a highly dramatic win.

“Hopefully we can take those moments where we just played, and we played with an aggressiveness that I think we lacked a little bit against Indiana,” head coach Chris Holtmann said. “Hopefully, that can help us here moving forward.”

Conversely, the Badgers will look to snap a four-game losing streak after experiencing upset losses from the conference last-place Michigan Wolverines, and most recently, a 22-point blowout loss to the Rutgers Scarlet Knights Saturday.

“They’re going to come out hungry,” Holtmann said. “I think our group will come out hungry [too] and we’ll go from there.”

It won’t be easy for the Buckeyes, as Wisconsin possesses an 11-2 record when playing on its home court and has outscored its opponents by an average of 5.9 points.

So far this season, Wisconsin is averaging 74.3 points per game, compared to Ohio State’s 70.

In the Buckeyes’ first matchup with the Badgers, Ohio State struggled to slow down Wisconsin’s junior guard Max Klesmit, who had a team-high 18 points.

The Buckeyes will continue to lean on sophomore guard Bruce Thornton, who is averaging a team-high 15.8 points, 4.2 assists and 1.3 steals per game.

It won’t be easy for Ohio State, but the matchup on Tuesday could provide a major boost for the Buckeyes as they head into the final stretch of their regular season.

The game will be broadcast on Peacock, and tipoff is set for 9 p.m.

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