Joe Wieskamp threw a lazy inbound pass that was snatched out of the air by Rob Phinisee who laid the ball up to extend Indiana’s lead to 13 points over Iowa with 33 seconds left in the game.
This was the nail in the coffin in what was a shocking and deflating night for the fourth ranked Hawkeyes. Indiana ended up winning the game 81-69 Thursday night in Carver-Hawkeye Arena, handing Iowa just their third loss of the season.
Sophomore Trayce Jackson-Davis, the leading scorer on the season for Indiana, once again led the way for them with 23 points and 7 rebounds. Junior guard Rob Phinisee also chipped in for the Hoosiers, tying his season high with 18 points. For Iowa it was the usual suspects filling the box score. Standout senior Luka Garza had 28 points and 12 rebounds. The only other player in double figures for the Hawkeyes was Joe Wieskamp, who finished with 16 points and 12 rebounds.
The first half gave little indication to the final result. Iowa took the lead with a little over 12 minutes remaining in the period and maintained a six point lead at the half. Garza and Wieskamp got going early, combining to score the first 15 points for the team. Jackson-Davis had 8 in the first half for the Hoosiers.
The second half didn’t start out much different. Garza continued to dominate in the low post. However, the man-to-man defense of Indiana had visibly raised its energy, and was making things much more difficult on the Hawkeyes.
Halfway through the second half, when it seemed like Iowa would coast to another conference win, Indiana found another gear. With 12 minutes left Iowa sophomore Jack Nunge hit an and-one layup. The Hawkeyes would not get another basket for almost 11 minutes.
Indiana used their versatility and activity on the defensive end to take the Hawkeyes completely out of their offensive rhythm. Iowa loves to play inside-out by throwing the ball into Garza, usually producing a post score for him or an open three for a teammate. Indiana’s near perfect defensive rotations allowed them to shut down these opportunities. Garza had two turnovers in the last four minutes from timely double-teams.
The Hoosiers were able to do something that no other team had done to Iowa this year. When the final buzzer sounded the Hawkeyes had been held to their lowest points total of the entire season. They finished the game shooting 38% from the field and 22% from three. Iowa senior Jordan Bohannon had one of his worst performances of his college career, going 0-9 from the field.
The last 10 minutes of the game were also a very impressive display of offense from the Hoosiers. Iowa ran a mix of man-to-man and zone for the entire game, but Indiana found success against both. They consistently made the right passes and hit open shots, going 8-17 from three. Their advantage in athleticism allowed them to beat one-on-one matchups when Iowa went to man-to-man. They also did most of their damage down the stretch without Jackson-Davis, who picked up his fourth foul mid-way through the second half. Indiana finished with four players in double figures.
Following the game, Indiana head coach Archie Miller praised his team’s offensive execution, telling reports: “Tonight we moved the ball really well against the zone… we were able to, at the end of the day, crack the game open with some really good open shots and passes.”
Following their big win, Indiana will host Rutgers on Sunday at Simon Skjodt Assembly Hall. Iowa’s next game was also scheduled to be Sunday versus Nebraska, but that game was postponed to Covid-19 protocols, so the Hawkeyes will not play again until they go on the road to face No. 22 Illinois next Friday.
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