Jan. 26, 2012
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LINCOLN, Neb. — The University of Iowa’s comeback bid at No. 19 Nebraska fell short, as the Hawkeyes dropped a 60-53 decision Thursday night at the Devaney Center.
The loss drops the Hawkeyes’ record to 11-10 overall and 3-5 in Big Ten play, while Nebraska improves to 17-3 overall and 6-2 in conference play.
“I am proud of my team and the fight we had,” said UI head coach Lisa Bluder. “It could have been easy at halftime, facing a top-20 team on the road, you’re down 13, they could have said let’s get it over with and go home. My team fought back and made the most of it.”
Trailing 46-33 with 9:43 remaining, the Hawkeyes used an 11-0 spurt to make it a game. Freshman Samantha Logic opened with a 3-pointer at the 9:31 mark to make the score 46-36 before junior Jaime Printy drained a triple with 8:18 to play to cut the deficit to 46-39.
Printy’s old-fashioned three point play at the 7:40 mark pulled Iowa to within four (46-42), and senior Kamille Wahlin followed with a jumper to make the score 46-44 with 7:07 remaining.
“Jaime Printy tried to put the team on her back and carry us,” said Bluder. “We will be better in the long run because of it.”
After a pair of Emily Cady free throws pushed the margin to four (48-44), Wahlin drained a 3-pointer at the 5:07 mark to get Iowa to within one (48-47).
With the score 52-51 with 3:11 left, the Huskers delivered a knock-out blow. Following a jumper by Cady that made the score 54-51, Nebraska’s Kaitlyn Burke connected on a 3-pointer late in the shot clock to give her team the the 57-51 lead with 1:37 to play, essentially sealing the outcome.
Printy paced the Hawkeyes, scoring 17 points with four 3-pointers. Wahlin netted 11 points to go along with four assists, while Logic added 10 points. Senior Kelly Krei paced Iowa on the glass, pulling in 10 boards.
The Hawkeyes shot 30.8 percent (16-of-52) from the floor and 28.6 percent (8-of-28) from long range. Iowa’s comeback bid was fueled by the 3-pointer, as seven of the team’s eight makes came in the second half. The Hawkeyes won the rebounding battle, 36-35, but finished the game with 20 turnovers.
NU sophomore Jordan Hooper led all scorers with 22 points and 15 rebounds for her Big Ten-leading ninth double-double. She made 7-of-14 attempts, three of which came from distance.
“Jordan Hooper was again fabulous — double-double,” said Bluder. “She was tremendous and is a very hard player to defend. She’s so active and can do so many things, especially with her size.”
After battling to a nine all tie over the first six minutes of the game, the Hawkeyes grabbed a 14-10 advantage on a jumper by Wahlin and a 3-pointer by Krei at the 12:16 mark. Unfortunately, that was Iowa’s last field goal of the half.
“I don’t know how many times you can win when you go 12 minutes, a quarter of the game, without scoring a field goal,” said Bluder. “That was a tough stretch for us. It was almost like halftime couldn’t come quick enough.”
The Hawkeyes missed their final 13 shots of the first half and committed 10 turnovers during the span, allowing the Huskers to go on a 20-3 run to take a 30-17 lead into the locker room. Iowa shot 20.8 percent (5-of-24) in the opening 20 minutes and 1-of-11 (9.1 percent), while committing 13 turnovers.
Iowa returns to action in less than 48 hours, hosting 13th-ranked Purdue at 2 p.m. Saturday afternoon on Mediacom Court inside Carver-Hawkeye Arena.