IOWA CITY– After losing a heartbreaker 60-58 to Ohio State last week, the Hawkeyes won a 75-67 double-overtime heartwarmer last Saturday over Penn State.
One could only wonder how much better Iowa would have been if Cyrus Tate wouldn’t have gotten hurt.
Big Cy went down January 8 against Minnesota with Iowa leading by 13 points. The Gophers came back and beat the Hawks, 52-49.
With Cy out, Iowa was 2-7, since he’s been back they are 2-5 but Jeff Peterson has missed the last six games.
In Iowa’s first meeting against Penn State (without Cy) the Hawkeyes blew a 13-point lead with eight minutes left and lost 63-59.
Jamelle Cornley used Iowa up in the first game, playing all 40 minutes, hitting 11-17 from the floor, scoring 24 points and pulling down six rebounds.
With Cyrus back last Saturday on senior day, he helped hold Jamelle to 4-12 shooting, 10 points, one rebound and he played 46 minutes.
With both Cy and Jarryd Cole on the floor the Hawks dominated the glass with a 43-32 advantage. Both Cy and Jarryd had double-doubles… Cy with 15 points, 10 boards, Jarryd 14 points and 11 boards.
What a great one-two punch in the paint.
Of course Jake Kelly, who was fighting the flu, had a monster game with clutch shooting, 22 points and a career-high 11 assists.
“It was strictly up to him ‘do you want to play’ and he just absolutely gutted it out,” said Iowa coach Todd Lickliter. “I don’t know if I’ve been involved with a performance of any more toughness then that. The guys rallied around him.”
I guess what that really shows is the Hawkeyes need to develop more depth, especially in the center and power forward positions.
Both Matt Gatens and Devan Bawinkle played the full 50 minutes in Iowa’s 15th win of the season. Matt had 12 points and four assists while Devan scored nine with two assists.
Jake Kelly gets my vote for at least one spot on the all-conference team, while Matt Gatens should get a lot of votes for Big Ten freshman of the year.
The Hawks play Michigan Thursday, March 12, at 1:30 p.m. in the first round of the Big Ten tournament.