Nov. 25, 2014
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By DARREN MILLER
IOWA CITY, Iowa — Tempo on the court Tuesday wasn’t a style the University of Iowa women’s basketball team likes to play, but there were no complaints with the end result.
The No. 16 Hawkeyes remained undefeated in five games — all at Carver-Hawkeye Arena — with a 73-45 victory over Northern Iowa (1-2) in front of 3,711 on Mediacom Court. After a humdrum pace in the first half, Iowa turned up the heat and scored more points over the final 20 minutes (47) than the Panthers did in the game (45).
“This was kind of a low-scoring slow-down game and we don’t like to play that way,” UI head coach Lisa Bluder said. “It’s good to go against different styles of play and still be successful. We know we can do it, so the next time it happens to us it’s not a surprise.”
What allowed the Hawkeyes breathing room was a zone trap defense that forced 22 turnovers. They outscored Northern Iowa 15-0 off turnovers and 11-0 in fast break points. While the Panthers were content to hold the ball or pass it around the perimeter, Iowa hurried the action by trapping.
“They would either have to make a mistake or take a shot quicker than they wanted to,” Bluder said.
It was the third game (and win) for the Hawkeyes in five days. Sophomore Ally Disterhoft poured in a game-high 18 points and made all seven free throw attempts. Senior Samantha Logic scored 13 points with seven rebounds and four assists and freshman Whitney Jennings added 12 points and four assists. Logic and Jennings played 29 minutes.
After shooting 37 percent from the field in the first half, Iowa converted 16-of-33 in the second (48.5 percent) and made 6-of-12 3-point field goals. The Panthers were limited to 30.8 percent shooting from the field, including 7-of-26 (1-of-10 from 3) over the final 20 minutes.
“I thought we did a much better job in the second half of attacking and getting to the rim for higher-percentage shots,” Bluder said.
Iowa secured the lead for good after a layup by Logic that made the score 20-19 with 3:14 left in the first half.
Jen Keitel and Stephanie Davison each scored 13 points for Northern Iowa. Keitel collected 11 rebounds.
The Hawkeyes leave for Las Vegas early Wednesday morning for neutral-site games against Arkansas (Friday) and Gonzaga (Saturday).
“First time we have been on the road, that’s going to be unusual for us,” Bluder said.