Everything went right for the No. 17 Badgers (8-2) Wednesday night as they dispatched the Idaho State Bengals (1-8) by a score of 78-44 with next to no problems.
UW got things started quickly, racing out to a 19-3 lead in the first half of the first period. Things didn’t get much better from there for the Bengals, who were held to a paltry 16 points in the first half.
Senior guard Bronson Koenig led the way with 21 points, 16 of which came in the second half. This was his third-straight game shooting about 40 percent from 3-point range, as he drilled four of his seven attempts from three.
At the outset of the game, it was senior forward Nigel Hayes and redshirt sophomore forward Ethan Happ that did the heavy lifting, working an easy two-man game down low to find some quick layups. Happ recorded his fourth double-double of the season with 12 points and 12 rebounds, and also tacked on three assists.
Redshirt senior guard Zak Showalter finally got his game off the ground and put together an all-around effective performance with four points, five rebounds, three assists and four steals. Showalter’s slow start to the season has been concerning, but he showed signs of life Wednesday night.
Dunks came early and often for the Badgers, as Happ, Hayes, senior forward Vitto Brown and sophomore forward Khalil Iverson all threw down ferocious jams over an undersized Idaho State team.
Bengals’ superstar Ethan Telfair was held scoreless until late in the second half and finished with just two points on 1-of-9 shooting from the floor.
The Badgers now head east to Milwaukee to take on Marquette, which beat them early in the year last season. The game tips off Saturday at 1 p.m.