No. 24 Iowa continued its dominance against its neighbor to the west by upending No. 25 Nebraska, 93-84, at Carver-Hawkeye Arena on Sunday night. Jordan Bohannon led all scorers with 25 points after basically* spending the first 20 minutes of the game scoreless, and Isaiah Moss provided a needed boost with 14 points, 10 rebounds and 5 assists. The win is Iowa's first of the Big Ten season, moving the Hawkeyes to 1-3 in conference play.
*Bohannon banked in a running three-pointer as the halftime buzzer sounded, giving him his first points of the game and Iowa a four-point lead at the break.
After a back-and-forth start to the game, Tyler Cook hit an and-1 with 8:24 left in the first half to give Iowa a 29-26 lead, which the Hawkeyes would not relinquish for the duration of the game. Iowa never pulled away—a 13-4 second-half run gave Iowa a 62-51 lead, and it would never get larger than that—but Nebraska also never had the ball with a chance to tie or take the lead in the second half.
Bohannon took over the second half, leading Iowa with four of its six three-pointers in the second half. He also hit all eight of his free throws in the final minute of the game, thwarting any hope the Huskers may have had for a comeback. On one play with 5:20 to go and Iowa nursing a 4-point lead, Joe Wieskamp lofted a perimeter pass to Bohannon, which was nearly intercepted by a Nebraska defender and would have certainly ended in at least a layup. Bohannon outmuscled his opponent for the ball in midair, spun around after landing and heaved in a three-pointer to push Iowa's lead back to a comfortable seven points. That's a five-point swing, and that's also exactly what you'd hope to see from JBo in that situation. If the light's green, you'd better be shooting.
"The only thing that was going to allow Bohannon to miss that was if he over-salivated, and the ball slipped out of his hands."— Iowa On BTN (@IowaOnBTN) January 7, 2019
- Shon Morris, on @JordanBo_3's late wide-open @IowaHoops 3 pic.twitter.com/kUypMIKDJh
You don't get to 93 points without either A: Prime Wilt Chamberlain or B: lots of contribution down the lineup, and Iowa had numerous players with noteworthy efforts on Sunday.
- Tyler Cook: 16 points, 7 rebounds, a borderline shocking 8-for-9 performance at the line
- Ryan Kriener: 25 spirited minutes on the inside, finishing with 14 points, 3 blocks and badly needed energy
- Luka Garza: 8 points in 10 minutes in his return from an ankle injury
- Joe Wieskamp: 29 minutes, 10 points, 3 of Iowa's 12 offensive rebounds and a block
And on and on. That's what it takes for one win in the Big Ten this year. One. How many games does the team—up and down the lineup—have like this in them this season? They'll need plenty to go to the Big Dance. At a minimum, though, the capability's certainly there.
And maybe now, it's time to start wondering if Nebraska, too, is a Hawkeye State. Sure seems like it's ours if we want it.
GO IOWA AWESOME.