Dec. 10, 2015
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By JAMES ALLAN
AMES, Iowa — Monte Morris’ runner with nine seconds remaining propelled No. 2/4 Iowa State to an 83-82 come-from-behind victory over the University of Iowa men’s basketball team Thursday night in an Iowa Corn Cy-Hawk Series matchup inside Hilton Coliseum.
The Hawkeyes led 82-74 with 2:36 remaining before the Cyclones closed the game on a 9-0 run. Two Morris free throws cut the lead to six points before Iowa turned the ball over on successive inbounds passes under its own basket.
A Matt Thomas 3-pointer cut the deficit to 82-79 with 1:05 remaining before Iowa State’s full-court pressure forced a five-second call and George Niang made two free throws to make it a one point game (82-81) with under a minute left.
Iowa State’s defense was at it again on Iowa’s next possession, forcing a shot clock violation, giving the Cyclones the ball with 22 seconds to play.
Morris took the final shot and delivered, connecting on a runner with nine seconds left to give Iowa State its first lead since 4-2 less than three minutes into the game. Iowa elected not to call a timeout and senior Jarrod Uthoff couldn’t connect on an off-balance last-second 3-pointer.
Iowa finished the game with a 47.7 field goal percentage, making 31-of-65 attempts. The Hawkeyes shot just 36.4 percent in the second half. Iowa made 11-of-27 3-point field goals, and won the rebounding battle, 37-36.
Uthoff led all scorers with 32 points, but only two came after the break. The forward was 11-of-13 in the first 20 minutes with five 3-pointer; he finished 12-of-20 for the game and grabbed a team-high nine rebounds.
Junior Peter Jok scored 18 points on 7-of-12 shooting with four 3-pointers, and senior Adam Woodbury has 12 points and five rebounds. Senior Mike Gesell finished with nine points and eight assists.
Uthoff was in another world in the first half, nearly out-scoring the Cyclones by himself. Iowa made seven of its first 10 shots in building a 23-14 lead and back-to-back Uthoff jumpers gave the Hawkeyes a 29-17 advantage midway through the opening half.
Iowa pushed its lead to 20 points (43-23) on a Uthoff jumper at the 4:42 mark and consecutive Uthoff 3-pointers — his fourth and fifth of the first half — made the score 49-30 with 1:46 remaining. Iowa State scored five points in the final minute, cutting its deficit to 14 (49-35) at the break.
Jok caught fire in second half, connecting on three 3-pointers to score 11 of Iowa’s first 13 points. His 3-pointer at the 16:50 mark extended the Hawkeyes’ margin to 20 points (62-42) for a second time.
Trailing 69-54 with 11:45 to play, Iowa State rattled off 10 unanswered points to trim the deficit to 69-64. Jok ended Iowa drought with a jumper at the 7:42 mark before the Cyclones scored the next five points with a Niang 3-point cutting the deficit to 71-70 with 5:55 left.
With the score 75-74, Iowa fought back with a 7-0 spurt behind a Uthoff jumper — his only field goal of the second half — a key Anthony Clemmons 3-pointer to give Iowa an 82-74 lead. The Hawkeyes didn’t score again.
Jameel McKay and Morris paced the Cyclones with 20 points apiece. McKay also had a game-high 12 rebounds, while Morris had nine assists. Thomas added 19 off the bench on six 3-pointers, and Niang finished with 16 points, six rebounds, and five assists.
Iowa State shot 50 percent in the second half and 48.6 percent for the game. The Cyclones made nine 3-pointers, had a 42-28 advantage in points in the paint, and scored 32 points off 17 Iowa turnovers.
Iowa (7-3) returns to action Dec. 19, facing Drake in the Hy-Vee Big Four Classic in Des Moines. Game time is set 3:30 p.m. (CT) from Wells Fargo Arena.