High-Flying Hawkeyes Sink Illinois, 108-72

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IOWA CITY, Iowa — Sophomore center Monkia Czinano started the University of Iowa’s scoring salvo 17 seconds into the first quarter. Junior Zion Sanders finished it with 43 seconds remaining.
In between, Iowa tacked on 37 more field goals and 17 free throws for a school-record point total during a 108-72 rout of Illinois in women’s basketball Tuesday in front of 6,942 on Mediacom Court inside Carver-Hawkeye Arena.
Iowa is 10-3 overall, 1-1 in the Big Ten; Illinois is 9-4, 0-2.
The Hawkeyes made 65 percent of their field goals (39 of 60), second only to a 70-percent effort against North Carolina Central on Dec. 14. They held the Illini to 38 percent shooting (26 of 69).
“There is no perfection in basketball, but we really clicked on offense,” Iowa head coach Lisa Bluder said. “We did not click (during a 78-69 loss) at Nebraska (on Dec. 28), and I was proud that we were able to bounce back and focus on Illinois and play like it was the Big Ten Championship game.”
Senior Kathleen Doyle scored a game and career-high 33 points, making 11 of 14 field goals and all nine free throws. Three other Hawkeyes scored in double figures: Czinano with 16 (7 of 10 from the field), senior Makenzie Meyer with 15 (5 of 10 from 3-point range), and senior Amanda Ollinger with 12 (6 of 7 from the field). Ollinger posted her first double-double by grabbing 14 rebounds (12 defensive).
“It feels I have been right there all season, so finally getting (a double-double) feels good,” Ollinger said. “My teammates and coaches have supported me. It took one game for knocking down that high-post shot to finally click.”
Kennedi Myles led Illinois with 18 points and five rebounds.
“When you break a school scoring record against a Big Ten opponent, that’s a pretty good offensive night for you. We shot the ball well with four people in double figures, I love to see that balance.
“I love to see those numbers (34 assists), just the distribution and working for good shots.”
One reason the Hawkeyes shot an out-of-this-world 65 percent from the field was because of proficient passing. Iowa entered the game leading the nation by averaging 21 assists per game…the Hawkeyes had 34 assists on 39 made field goals against Illinois.
“It’s a philosophy we try to bring to practice every day,” Bluder said. “Celebrate the assist and understand if I can set my teammate up for a great shot, that is just as fun as me taking an average shot. If you have players buy into that philosophy, it’s a fun style.”
Iowa has won 28 consecutive games on Mediacom Court inside Carver-Hawkeye Arena.
The 108 points by the Hawkeyes surpassed the previous record of 107 against University of South Carolina Upstate on Nov. 14, 2014 in Carver-Hawkeye Arena. The previous record for points against a Big Ten team was 103 against Ohio State (Jan. 25, 2018) and Wisconsin (Feb. 25, 2007).
The Hawkeyes take on Northwestern (12-1) on Sunday at Welsh-Ryan Arena in Evanston, Illinois. The Wildcats defeated Maryland, 81-58, on Tuesday at home.