By DARREN MILLER
ANN ARBOR, Mich. — A nine-game winning streak by the No. 18/19 University of Iowa women’s basketball team came to an end Sunday with a 78-63 loss to Michigan in front of 3,124 in Crisler Arena.
At 18-4 overall, 9-2 in the Big Ten, the Hawkeyes remain tied with Northwestern for first place in the league standings. Maryland, 8-2 in the Big Ten, plays Michigan State on Monday.
Two key ingredients that have led to Iowa’s success in recent years — assists and made free throws — favored the Wolverines on Sunday. Michigan had 18 assists (to Iowa’s nine) and made 14 of 19 free throws (Iowa was 8 of 12).
Four Hawkeyes scored in double figures, led by junior Alexis Sevillian with 15. She was 3 of 6 from 3-point range. Senior Kathleen Doyle scored 14, senior Makenzie Meyer had 13, and senior Amanda Ollinger added 10 points with eight rebounds.
Iowa never led and the game was tied for just 81 seconds. The Wolverines made 29 of 55 field goals (52.7 percent); Iowa made 25 of 56 (44.6).
Michigan (14-7, 5-5) was led by sophomore Naz Hillmon with 30 points and 10 rebounds.
QUOTING COACH BLUDER
“Michigan out-played us in every statistical category. They came out ready to play and we were lethargic. They got out to an instant run right off the bat and we were playing catch-up the rest of the time. When you’re playing catch-up on the road, it’s always a little harder.”
STATISTIC OF THE GAME
Michigan started quickly and led 22-11 after the first quarter. The Wolverines made 9 of 12 field goals (and both 3-point attempts) in the first 10 minutes. The Hawkeyes were 4 of 11 from the field in the first quarter, but they made three 3-pointers.
Michigan was also plus-15 in rebounding (39-24).
“Life is not good with the rebounds right now,” Bluder said.
Sophomore center Monika Czinano returned to the court after sitting out Iowa’s 77-66 win at Penn State with an ankle injury. She played 16 minutes at Michigan before fouling out with six points and three rebounds.
The Hawkeyes put their 32-game home winning streak on the line Thursday when they face Nebraska (15-6, 5-5) on Mediacom Court in Carver-Hawkeye Arena. Tip-off is 6:30 p.m. (CT). In the first meeting between the teams on Dec. 28 in Lincoln, Nebraska, the Cornhuskers posted a 78-69 victory.