Rapid Recap: Iowa 75, Northwestern 62

Pat+Spencer+dribbles+the+ball.+The+Wildcats+lost+to+Iowa+at+home+on+Tuesday.

Joshua Hoffman/The Daily Northwestern

Pat Spencer dribbles the ball. The Wildcats lost to Iowa at home on Tuesday.

Gabriela Carroll, Assistant Sports Editor

Northwestern started strong early, but once again the Wildcats could not get it done. The Wildcats fell 75-62, unable to keep up with Luka Garza and Iowa.

Garza started the first half with ten quick points, but NU matched him score-for-score with the help of 5 consecutive points from freshman center Ryan Young. Garza cooled off after that run, and did not score another point in the first half.

The Hawkeyes’ full-court defense slowed the pace of the game, but the Cats’ rebounding helped them keep pace with Iowa’s 3-point shooting. Iowa took a 41-35 lead into the half.

NU’s offense sputtered in the second frame, as the Cats found themselves unable to find opportunities in the paint. Sophomore forward Miller Kopp was the leading scorer with 14 points in the first half, but he didn’t score a field goal in the second half.

Garza found his magic touch once again around 9 minutes after the break and scored 14 consecutive points, giving Iowa a lead it would never lose.

Takeaways

1. Northwestern was strong on the glass in the first half.

The Cats took advantage of second-chance opportunities, most notably on a one-handed putback dunk from sophomore forward Pete Nance in the first half after a missed Kopp three. In the first half, NU scored 15 second-chance points, and grabbed 11 offensive rebounds to Iowa’s zero, creating its 22-11 rebound advantage.

The Cats had only grabbed 29 offensive rebounds in conference play prior to Tuesday’s game. Their offensive rebounding kept them in the game in the first half as they faced a barrage of 3-pointers from the Hawkeyes.

2. Iowa shot lights-out from behind the arc.

The Hawkeyes shot 8-for-15 from deep in the first half, which allowed them to end the half with a 41-35 lead. C.J. Fredrick, Bakari Evelyn and Garza combined to go 7-for-12, and their versatility from behind the arc was a challenge for the NU defense. Iowa took more than half of their shots from 3-point range, buoying their shooting percentage to 53.6 percent in the first half.

Iowa’s hot 3-point shooting cooled in the second half, only adding three more threes, but their excellent shooting continued as they shot 47.3% in the game.

3. Luka Garza played at All-Big Ten level.

Garza came into Tuesday’s matchup with a reputation as one of the most formidable scorers in the Big Ten, and he delivered for the Hawkeyes. He started the game with 10 quick points, but went quiet due to two early fouls. In the second half, Garza came back with a vengeance, scoring 14 straight points to pad the Iowa lead.

Garza was a major presence in the paint, but he also had success from three, shooting 3-4 from behind the arc. He finished the game with 27 points.

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Twitter: @gablcarroll

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