Jan. 18, 2006
IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) — Erek Hansen scored a career-high 20 points and No. 23 Iowa relied on clutch free throw shooting to beat Minnesota 76-72 on Wednesday night in the first triple-overtime game played in Carver Hawkeye Arena.
Iowa (14-4, 3-1 Big Ten) made nine straight free throws during a stretch of the second and third overtimes, while the Gophers (9-6, 0-4) went 5-of-12 from the line in the extra periods, including missing four straight when they had a chance to seal the victory in the final minute of the second overtime.
Iowa, winners of three straight, pulled away early in the third overtime when Adam Haluska made two free throws to put Iowa up 71-67, their biggest lead of the second half. Two free throws by Maurice Hargrow got the Gophers within 73-70, but Jeff Horner made three of four free throws over the final 37 seconds and the Hawkeyes held on, handing Minnesota its fourth straight Big Ten loss and sixth in its last seven games in Iowa City.
Greg Brunner had 17 points and a career-high 23 rebounds for Iowa, while Horner added 12 points and Haluska 10.
Hargrow led the Gophers with 16 points, while Vince Grier had 15 and Adam Boone 14.
The game featured two of the Big Ten’s worst shooting teams, and neither did much to bolster their percentages.
Iowa shot 39 percent from the field, including going 1-of-20 from 3-point range, but the Hawkeyes did shoot 72 percent from the free throw line.
The Gophers shot 35 percent from the field, including 7-of-19 from 3-point range, and his just 54 percent from the free throw line.
Minnesota, playing in its first triple-overtime game since 1982, had plenty of chances to get their first Big Ten win of the season.
Grier had two chances to be the hero, but missed last-second game-winners at the end of regulation and the first overtime.
Brunner had a chance to put Iowa up by one with 35 seconds left in the first overtime, but he missed the second free throw. Minnesota was content to run down the clock and let Grier take the final shot, but his jumper in heavy traffic bounced off the rim.
The Gophers led by as many as four points in the second overtime, but Iowa clawed back to tie it at 67 when Hansen made two free throws with 51 seconds remaining. Minnesota squandered a chance to take the lead late in the second overtime, but Jonathan Williams missed two free throws with 18 seconds left.