By JAMES ALLAN
IOWA CITY, Iowa — Four Hawkeyes scored in double figures, but visiting Ohio State handed the University of Iowa men’s basketball team a 92-81 loss Thursday night on Mediacom Court inside Carver-Hawkeye Arena.
The Buckeyes shot 53 percent from the field and had five players reach double figures. Keita Bates-Diop led all scorers with 26 points; including a key eight-point stretch in the second half after Iowa trimmed its 14-point halftime deficit to five points (48-43) three minutes in.
Ohio State took control of the game four minutes in, using a 16-1 run to turn a 12-9 deficit into a 25-13 lead. Iowa trailed 46-32 at the break after the Buckeyes shot 54.5 percent, making 18-of-33 field goals.
“We need to be more verbal when teams go on runs,” said junior Nicholas Baer. “You look at when teams are going on runs and we’re not getting a good shot or getting a stop when we need one badly.
“I think we’re right there, there are a few small things we can fix and we’ll be right back.”
Iowa’s full-court pressure got the Hawkeyes back into the game in the second half. The press forced three Buckeye turnovers in the first three minutes, and Iowa capitalized with nine unanswered points.
Freshman Luka Garza’s three point play capped the run, cutting the deficit to 46-41 and an Isaiah Moss jumper made the score 48-43 with 16:29 remaining.
“Iowa did a tremendous job to start the second half,” said Ohio State head coach Chris Holtman. “They came at us and we did not handle that well at all.”
But then Bates-Diop took over.
The forward made three field goals and added a pair of free throws to push the lead to 56-43 and Kam Williams’ jumper capped the 10-0 spurt with a jumper to stretch the lead to 15. Ohio State’s lead swelled at 16 points (77-61) on a C.J. Jackson steal and layup with 4:35 to play.
Sophomore Tyler Cook paced the Hawkeyes with 21 points, making 7-of-15 field goals and 7-of-8 free throws. It was his second straight 20-point game and fifth of the season.
Garza and Jordan Bohannon had 15 points apiece, while junior Nicholas Baer added 10. The Hawkeyes shot 42.6 percent and made seven 3-pointers (7-of-17) in the contest.
QUOTING COACH MCCAFFERY
“We are a young team, but we have enough experience to be playing better than we’re playing. I don’t want to use that as an excuse. Those sophomores played a lot last year.”
“There were times we were doing good stuff and individuals were playing well. There were stretches where we don’t and we have to be able to get through that and be a little tougher.”
Bohannon notched his first double-double of the season, finishing with 15 points and 10 assists. The guard made 6-of-13 field goals, including one 3-pointer, in 30 minutes. Iowa had 17 total assists in the game. It was Bohannon’s fourth career double-double.
ATTACKING THE GLASS
After having seven offensive rebounds in Tuesday’s loss against Michigan, Iowa hit the offensive boards vigorously against the Buckeyes. The Hawkeyes finished with 15 offensive rebounds, turning them into 24 second-chance points.
Cook had six offensive rebounds by himself after going without one against the Wolverines.
“We got on the glass better,” said Iowa head coach Fran McCaffery. “That’s the thing that stuck out the other night. When we’re struggling offensively, you have to go get some back. Tonight we got 15 offensive rebounds. That’s a team that is fighting.”
- The Hawkeyes were outscored, 42-26, in the paint and had just two fast-break points.
- Iowa took care of the basketball, committing just 11 turnovers.
- Records: Iowa (9-8, 0-4); Ohio State (12-4, 3-0)
The Hawkeyes return to action Sunday, traveling to College Park for a matchup against Maryland. The game will begin at 7 p.m. (CT). It’s the first of three straight road games.