Dec. 6, 2012
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On Thursday Dixon provided a spark while sharing the court with Printy.
Dixon broke a 39-39 tie with a 3-point field goal with 3:39 remaining and added a layup two minutes later as the Hawkeyes defeated No. 22 Iowa State 50-42 in the women’s basketball portion of the Iowa Corn Cy-Hawk Series on Mediacom Court inside Carver-Hawkeye Arena.
Dixon led all Hawkeyes (7-3 overall) over the final 20 minutes by scoring nine points; she shared team-high scoring honors with Theairra Taylor with 11. The Cyclones fell for the first time in six outings.
“I was definitely feeling it,” Dixon said. “My teammates got me the ball when I was open and we did a good job finding each other and going with what worked for us.”
Iowa bolted to a 14-0 lead before Iowa State scored its first basket — a 3-pointer by Nikki Moody — with 6:51 elapsed. Moody came off the bench for the first time this season because she was late for class last week, Iowa State head coach Bill Fennelly said.
“It’s tough to spot teams two touchdowns and win a game,” Fennelly said. “We made the decision to not start Nikki Moody for a reason she was late for class, and we have rules, and it was probably a coaching decision I will regret because it was 14-0.”
Moody scored a game-high 12 points in 36 minutes.
Iowa’s early offensive output didn’t hold up in what UI head coach Lisa Bluder called a defensive battle.
“It was a battle the whole game,” she said. “For us to hold them 30-plus pints below their average, I feel good about that.”
The Cyclones entered the game averaging 73.4 points; Iowa limited them to 26.3-percent shooting from the field (15-of-57) and 20.6-percent from 3-point range (7-of-34). Iowa State made all five of its free throws, but that was overshadowed by the fact Iowa went to the line 25 times. Even though the Hawkeyes shot an uncharacteristically low 64-percent from the line, that was a place where they collected 11 more points on the night that the Cyclones (16 to 5).
While Bluder was frustrated with the number of missed free throws, she was pleased by the way her team handled the ball in the final 20 minutes.
“We missed too many free throws,” Bluder said. “We had an opportunity to put this game away, but we missed too many free throws. But I thought in the second half we did a good job of taking care of the ball.”
Iowa’s win means the home team in the intrastate rivalry has won the last six meetings and 11 of the last 12. Last season’s game was also decided by eight points, with Iowa State prevailing 62-54 in Ames.
Thursday’s outcome marked Iowa’s second victory of the season against a top 25 team. The Hawkeyes disposed of No. 12 West Virginia, 79-70, on Nov. 25.
“For us to have to top-25 wins this early in the year is good for us,” Bluder said. “Sometimes you can’t get those in your nonconference season as easily, so it is very good to have two already this year.”
Iowa led for the first 25:06 of the game. A 3-pointer by Moody tied the game at 23 with 14:54 to play. The Cyclones grabbed their only lead at 26-24 on a made 3-pointer by Hallie Christofferson at the 12:20 mark. Iowa then went on a 15-2 run, started by a layup by Taylor and culminating with two made free throws by Kathy Thomas.
Taylor, who missed the postgame news conference because of the flu, pulled down nine rebounds with three assists and two steals. Samantha Logic matched Taylor’s rebound total and handed out four assists. Printy scored 10 points and was a perfect 6-for-6 from the line.
Iowa made 15-of-51 field goals (29.4 percent), but had 12 assists. The Hawkeyes had more assists (six) than turnovers (five) on the second half.
After 10 days off, Iowa heads to Des Moines to conclude the mythical Iowa State Championship against Drake.
“It gives us a little more time to work on things,” Bluder said. “We have already played 10 games — that’s a lot — and we had to crunch it in in a short amount of time. We have not had a lot of time to work on us and being able to work on some situations that we have not been able to address so far.”