Chucky Hepburn scored 19 points and Connor Essegian added 18 as Wisconsin nipped Penn State 79-74 in overtime Wednesday in Big Ten action from University Park, Pa.
Hepburn (5 of 9) and Essegian (4 of 7) were dangerous from behind the arc as the Badgers (14-9, 6-7 Big Ten) won for just the third time in their last 10 games. Two of those victories have come against the Nittany Lions (14-10, 5-8), who have dropped three straight contests for the first time this season.
Jalen Pickett paced Penn State with 17 points, eight assists and eight rebounds. Camren Wynter chipped in 15 points for the Nittany Lions, while Seth Lundy had 14 points and nine boards.
The Badgers scored the first four points of overtime, capped by Essegian’s 3-pointer from the top of the arc, to open a 72-68 advantage. Pickett brought Penn State within two points twice down the stretch, but Wisconsin answered each time — first on a layup by Steven Crowl and then on a bucket by Max Klesmit.
Tyler Wahl (16 points, eight assists) and Hepburn combined to make three free throws in the final 30 seconds to seal the win.
No team led by more than six during the first half, aside from a brief eight-point lead for Wisconsin before Pickett’s layup at the buzzer brought the Nittany Lions within 35-29 at the break.
With 13:22 remaining in the second half, Jordan Davis drained a 3-pointer to give the Badgers a 47-40 lead. However, Penn State rallied to draw even at 56-56 with Myles Dread, Lundy and Pickett each knocking down a 3-pointer to fuel the comeback.
The game was still tied with less than three minutes remaining in regulation when Wynter hit a jumper for the Nittany Lions, although Wahl promptly answered with a layup to even the score at 65-65.
The teams then exchanged empty possessions until Hepburn drained a 3-pointer with 33 seconds to go. The lead didn’t last long, however, as Lundy responded with a 3-pointer of his own 10 seconds later, tying the game at 68-68.
Wisconsin missed twice on its final trip — a 3-pointer by Hepburn and a putback attempt by Carter Gilmore — as the game went into overtime.
–Field Level Media