(NEWS10) – Wisconsin ended the first half on a 30-12 run and scored the first 10 points of the second to take a commanding lead on its way to a 92-65 victory over Siena Sunday night at the Kohl Center in the 2K Classic Benefiting Wounded Warrior Project.
The Badgers bounced back smartly from a stunning 69-67 loss to Western Illinois in their season-opener Friday night, and in the process avoided suffering consecutive losses under Bo Ryan for the first time. Wisconsin shot 59% from the field, including 68% in the second half.
Nico Clareth scored 15 of his team-high 21 points in the second half to lead Siena. Marquis Wright followed up his 20-point, seven-rebound effort at Duke Friday night with 14 points, four assists and just one turnover and Lavon Long added 14 points and made 8-11 free throws. Clareth, Wright and Long combined to shoot 50% (18-36) from the field, the rest of the Saints shot just 25% (4-16)
Junior guard Bronson Koenig led Wisconsin with a career-high 23 points.
Ryan Oliver put Siena up 14-13 with the Saints’ only three-pointer (1-8) of the first half, and Lavon Long pushed the lead to three with a hard drive on the next possession.
Siena’s offense then went silent.
The Saints misfired on 11 of their final 14 shots in the first half, and became increasingly foul prone. Wisconsin shot 50% from the field (14-28) in the first half and made 12-16 free throws.
Wisconsin’s 30-12 run spanned the final 12:20 of the first half and was extended to 40-12 after the first 3:05 of the second.
The lead ballooned to 33, 78-45, on Koenig’s tear-drop bank shot with seven minutes to play.
Siena will try to apply the lessons learned from its unprecedented opening weekend schedule when it returns to the court to face Radford Friday night in the Bryant sub-regional of the 2K Classic in Smithfield, RI