Fast Start Out of the Gate


Nov. 7, 2010

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IOWA CITY, Iowa — It didn’t take long for the University of Iowa women’s basketball team to look in midseason form. The Hawkeyes dominated on both ends of the court and crushed Concordia-St. Paul, 101-59, Sunday in an exhibition opener for both teams. Iowa out-rebounded Concordia 51-32, and notched 27 assists on 36 baskets.

“I’m happy,” said UI head coach Lisa Bluder. “For the first time out, I thought we did a lot of things really well. Almost five people in double figures, we shot the ball well in all categories. We had 27 assists on 36 field goals, that’s great team basketball. We took care of the basketball. We did a good job on the boards both offensively and defensively.”

UI junior Kelly Krei led all scorers with 25 points, including 6-of-8 from 3-point range. Center Morgan Johnson was right behind with 20 points and 11 rebounds, and Kachine Alexander posted a double-double with 11 points and 13 rebounds. Junior Kamille Wahlin netted 17 points along with a game-high eight assists.

“We want to pass the ball extremely well, and look for the high percentage shot,” said Bluder. “That’s something that we stress over and over again, we want that assist leading to the basket. They did it tonight.”

Wahlin put Iowa on the board with its first points of the season as she knifed through defenders to get into the lane and finish with the layup, tying the game at two, with just fewer than two minutes gone by.

Krei then got into the action, scoring 10 straight points, including two shots from deep, then stole the ball near midcourt and raced to the other end for a layup. That basket gave Iowa a 25-5 lead, six minutes into the game.

“What we really want Kelly to do this year is to not defer offensively,” said Bluder. “When she’s open, step out there and shoot the ball, and shoot it with confidence and run the floor like she did today. I’m really happy with what Kelly did today, because I think last year she would have deferred, and not done it until she had to do it and now she’s doing it all the time and I’m really happy with that.”

“What you want to do is look to dominate. That’s what we want to do every time. We want to look to dominate in all of our categories, and we really try to challenge them on the defensive end.”
UI head coach
Lisa Bluder

The red-hot Hawkeyes cooled down for a bit, scoring just 11 points during a nine-minute span from the 14-minute mark until 4:57 remained before halftime. However Krei continued her streak from downtown, hitting yet another 3-pointer, this one giving Iowa a 39-21 advantage.

Iowa then used its defense to generate offense. Johnson got a hand up to swat away a Concordia shot, and Wahlin capitalized on the other end for Iowa, pulling up in transition and hitting the 3, stretching Iowa’s lead to 47-23 with 2:52 remaining in the half.

“That’s something we’re really trying to stress this year a little bit more than we did last year,” said Bluder. “We want to push the ball and I thought we looked to really try and do it tonight.”

With seven seconds left in the half, Printy drained another 3-pointer for Iowa, this time from the wing, sending the Hawkeyes into the locker room with a commanding 52-30 lead. Iowa was 8-of-16 from deep in the first half.

The second half picked up where the first half left off, and then some. Johnson opened with two points under the basket after grabbing an offensive rebound from a Wahlin miss, giving Iowa a 54-30 advantage.

Following a pair of free throws from Johnson, Iowa used a 22-10 run over the final 8:20 of the game to grab the 42-point win. Iowa did not score more than 100 points last season.

“What you want to do is look to dominate,” said Bluder. “That’s what we want to do every time. We want to look to dominate in all of our categories, and we really try to challenge them on the defensive end.”

Iowa travels to Corpus Christi, Tex., for the Islander Tip-Off Tournament to officially begin the 2010-11 season Nov. 12. The Hawkeyes take on Southern University, and then either Texas A&M-Corpus Christi or Arkansas State on the second day of the tournament.

“It’s not something that we usually do,” said Bluder. “But we had to since we couldn’t host our own tournament next weekend because of the volleyball match in our arena. It’s not what you want to have happen is your first two games be on the road, but it’s what is dealt to us, and we have to handle it.”