By Don Lund
The Hawkeye men and women picked up road wins last week, but first the men got knocked off by Michigan State.
The Hawkeyes gave themselves a good chance to beat the Spartans Thursday at Carver-Hawkeye Arena but came up short and lost their third straight Big Ten game, 62-59.
That was also their third straight loss to a ranked team and Devyn Marble, Iowa’s leading scorer, didn’t play.
Zach McCabe and Melsahn Basabe stepped up with 15 and 14 points respectively. Eric May started for Devyn, hit his first 3-pointer and had seven boards but only scored five points.
Too many turnovers, especially at the end, and not hitting free throws as time was running out. The Hawks couldn’t close the deal after leading for most of the game.
Anthony Clemmons, freshman point guard for Iowa, was 1-9 from the floor, including a missed 3-pointer at the buzzer that could have put the game into overtime.
Anthony also missed a couple of free throws with less than 15 seconds left that would have helped.
I’m not throwing Anthony under the bus and blaming him for the loss because I remember when Roy Marble, the Hawkeyes all time leading scorer, was a freshman.
Roy, in his first year as a Hawk, missed a couple of free throws late in a game that Iowa lost by a two but Roy was huge the rest of his career in a lot of victories.
No one can forget Roy’s sophomore year when Iowa went 30-5 and made it to the sweet 16 with new head coach Tom Davis.
Back to the Michigan State game. Coach McCaffery talked about Iowa’s lack of toughness on offense. Taking care of the ball is so important and Mike Gesell and Anthony Clemmons both had four turnovers.
You have to give a little credit to Tom Izzo and his Spartans. This isn’t their first dance and they have some good talent to work with and play a tough, physical game.
I’m not sure if the victory last Sunday at Evanston was a must win for the Hawkeyes but it was sure nice to knock off the Northwestern Wildcats, 70-50.
Can you believe that snapped a five game losing streak to the ‘Cats?
It was also nice to see Devyn Marble back in the lineup after missing the Michigan game with a sprained ankle.
Iowa’s two starting guards, freshman Anthony Clemmons and Mike Gesell, have both struggled the last couple of games.
Anthony and Mike combined for 1-10 shooting, 3 points and three rebounds.
Devyn wasn’t 100% but he scored 8 points, all in the first half, had five assists and played a team-high 30 minutes.
Coach McCaffery talked about being mentally tough at both ends of the floor.
You can’t get much tougher than holding Northwestern to 15 points in the first half and 50 for the game.
“That’s as good as we can play defensively,” said coach McCaffery. “This offense is very difficult to guard. I don’t know that I’ve ever been in a game were our team guarded any better then we did today.”
Aaron White continued to lead the offense with 17 points on 7-9 shooting and Adam Woodbury did a good job boxing out and led the Hawks with nine boards.
One of the major factors in the win was Iowa’s bench.
When you can have Josh Oglesby come off the bench and break out of his shooting slump hitting four 3-pointers, that opens up the middle for the big guys.
“It’s only a matter of time,” said the coach about Josh. “He’s been killing it in practice. I’m so proud of him. He’s working at it. I love that kid and I just keep encouraging him to shoot.”
Melsahn Basabe was 5-6 from the floor, finishing with 11 points. Zach McCabe and Eric May each had 7 points off the bench.
“Those four guys that came off the bench were tremendous and I thought we got great minutes from Patrick Ingram and Gabe Olaseni when they were in there,” said coach McCaffery.
Iowa is sitting at 12-5, 1-3 in the Big Ten and has a week off to rest Devyn’s ankle.
The Hawks host Wisconsin this Saturday.
Road trip for Hawk Women
Iowa picked up a good road win at Wisconsin last week with a 65-56 win over the Badgers.
The Hawkeyes’ one-two punch of Morgan Johnson (23 points, 11 rebounds) and Samantha Logic (12 points, 11 rebounds) led the way. The Hawks also controlled the boards with a 45-25 advantage.
Samantha also had nine assists and it’s so much fun to watch her run the court, set up the defense and make the good pass to an open teammate.
Samantha also hit two 3-pointers, and if she can keep doing that will make it tough on opposing defenses.
The Hawks have seen a lot of zone defense because of the great inside presence of Morgan Johnson and Bethany Doolittle.
Morgan was 6-12 from the floor and 11-11 from the free throw line against Wisconsin.
For the season, Morgan is shooting over 57 percent from the floor, which leads Iowa, while Samantha is hitting 47 percent of her shots from the floor.
Melissa Dixon leads the Hawks in 3-point shooting with 33 followed by Jaime Printy with 31.
It’s so important that Melissa, Jaime and Samantha keep hitting 3s or teams will keep playing zone.
The Hawkeyes are 13-4, 2-1 in the Big Ten and have a tough road game at Michigan State Thursday.
This week I’d like to thank Eggy’s on Highway 965 for helping to sponsor my page.
It’s real close to where I live, so I have tried everything from steaks to sliders on their menu. I also recommend the nacho plates and they have a wide variety of drinks to choose from.
Mark, the owner, is a former Hawkeye and played basketball for Iowa in the late ‘60s. Eggy’s has a lot of great pictures of some of the Hawkeye teams plus pictures of the football stadium when it was first built.
It’s also a great place to watch sports with a lot of TVs.