By DARREN MILLER
IOWA CITY, Iowa — Iowa didn’t have an early answer for No. 3 Purdue’s hot hand during an 87-64 men’s basketball loss Saturday on Mediacom Court inside Carver-Hawkeye Arena.
The Boilermakers (19-2 overall, 8-0 Big Ten) won their 15th consecutive game by shooting 56 percent from the field for the game, including an arena record 20 3-point field goals. Purdue made 20 of 29 field goals in the first half.
Iowa (10-11, 1-7) received 19 points in 20 minutes from freshman Luka Garza. Garza scored nine points over the first 3:27 of the second half and finished with 15 points during the final 20 minutes. He was 6 of 6 from the field (2 of 2 from 3-point range) in the second half and he was 8 of 10 from the field for the game.
“Purdue has a great team and we didn’t do what we needed to do to get this win,” Garza said. “We have to learn from it and I think we took positive steps in the second half. We did a lot of things better in the second half.”
Purdue sank 69 percent of its field goal attempts in the first half (11 of 16 from 3-point range) to grab a 51-20 advantage at the break. The Hawkeyes shot 25 percent over the first 20 minutes, making eight of 32 field goals.
Iowa trailed 66-29 with 16:22 to play, but finished with a 35-21 run.
“We shot well in the second half,” Iowa head coach Fran McCaffery said. “When you lose by (23 points) it’s never good, but there were some good things. Our second-half performance offensively was good.”
The Hawkeyes made 18 of 27 field goals in the second half (66.7 percent).
Brady Ellingson scored nine second-half points (in 12 minutes) on 4 of 5 shooting from the field. Tyler Cook scored seven points in the second half and finished with nine points. Jordan Bohanon also scored nine points with four assists; Isaiah Moss handed out five assists.
Four Purdue players scored in double figures, led by Carsen Edwards with a game-high 22. He made 6 of 9 3-point attempts.
QUOTING COACH FRAN MCCAFFERY
“Purdue has a special team. They have played well this year and are 19-2 for a reason…we got out-played by a really good team. They have been doing it to everybody. We have to learn from it, move on, and keep grinding.”
STATISTIC OF THE GAME
Purdue made an arena record 20 3-point field goals on 33 attempts. The previous record was 18 by Iowa against Savannah State on Nov. 13, 2016.
“We have so many guys who can pass as well as shoot,” Purdue coach Matt Painter said. “I think that’s the combination that helps us. Good decision-making leads to pretty good shots and a pretty good (shooting) percentage from the field.”
Nicholas Baer gathered a game-high seven rebounds, five of them on the offensive end and Cordell Pemsl pulled down six. The Hawkeyes out-rebounded Purdue, 32-30.
“I thought Baer’s effort was terrific,” McCaffery said. “There are tangible things that are productive and positive.”
The Hawkeyes return to Mediacom Court inside Carver-Hawkeye Arena on Tuesday to face Wisconsin at 6 p.m. (CT). The Badgers are 10-10 overall, 3-4 in the Big Ten.