By JAMES ALLAN
IOWA CITY, Iowa — The University of Iowa men’s basketball team trailed William Jewell College, 46-45, in a Friday night exhibition game at the half. From there, the Hawkeyes hardly missed.
Iowa shot 69.7 percent in a 60-point second half to cruise to a 105-81 victory on Mediacom Court inside Carver-Hawkeye Arena. The Hawkeyes had four players reach double figures and 13 players score.
Sophomore Jordan Bohannon paced the team with 19 points, making 7-of-12 field goals, including four 3-pointers. Freshman Luka Garza had 17 points on 8-of-13 shooting, and sophomore Tyler Cook and Jack Nunge had 16 points apiece.
Nunge was a perfect 6-for-6 from the floor and tied Garza for the team lead with nine rebounds.
Iowa trailed 57-51 at the 17-minute mark of the second half before going on a 12-0 spurt to take a 65-57 lead. Garza had back-to-back layups to start the run before Brady Ellingson and Bohannon had consecutive 3-pointers to give Iowa a 61-57 lead.
The Hawkeyes pushed their lead to 10 points on a Ryan Kriener dunk at the 12-minute mark and scored 34 points over the final 11 minutes.
Iowa shot 55.4 percent for the game and went 24-of-37 from the free throw stripe.
QUOTING IOWA HEAD COACH FRAN MCCAFFERY
On Connor McCaffery’s redshirt status following Christian Williams’ transfer
“Connor’s status hasn’t changed yet, but it’s a possibility. He hasn’t spoken with (Iowa baseball coach Rick) Heller yet. Coach Heller was out of town today; after he does a decision will be made.”
On Iowa’s defense
“This is a hard team to guard, especially when they took the big guy out and went small. As the game went on, a lot of our guys did a much better job defensively, moving their feet.
“They went small and we went big. We got some shot blocks and contests at the rim and that gave us transition opportunities. Once we got it down there, we just threw it in. We had a distinctive size advantage.”
PLAYER(S) OF THE GAME
Iowa’s freshmen Luka Garza and Jack Nunge combined to score 33 points and grab 18 rebounds in their Iowa debuts. Nunge showed a versatile skill set, going inside-and-out. He made all six of his field goals, including all three 3-pointers.
“They were phenomenal,” said McCaffery. “It isn’t a surprise. They have been great since the minute they got here and they were great in high school. They both have mature games, tremendous versatility, and their length… they score, rebound, and defend. I couldn’t be more proud of those two guys.
“It seemed like (Nunge) did everything right as I think back on the game. I don’t remember Jack making any mistakes. That’s special for a freshman.”
STAT OF THE GAME
Iowa assisted on 23 of its 36 field goals. Eleven different Hawkeyes had at least one assist in the game. Bohannon led the team with four helpers.
“Guys are finding each other,” said McCaffery. “This is a very unselfish group.”
- Iowa outscored William Jewell, 46-30, in the paint and 17-2 in second-chance points.
- The Hawkeye reserves outscored their Cardinal counter parts, 50-22.
- Iowa shot 55.4 percent for the game and made nine 3-pointers.
- The Hawkeyes were out-rebounded 23-20 in the first half, but finished +10 for the game (45-35).
- Sophomore Isaiah Moss played just 11 minutes in the game — all in the first half — after his ankle stiffened up in the first half.
- Freshman Connor McCaffery finished with five points, three rebounds, and two assists in 18 minutes.
Iowa hosts its second exhibition Nov. 2, hosting Belmont Abbey College at 7:05 p.m. (CT). The Hawkeyes open the regular season Nov. 10 against Chicago State.