By DARREN MILLER
PISCATAWAY, N.J. — A 3-point field goal by University of Iowa senior Makenzie Meyer with 11 seconds left in regulation capped a nine-point second-half comeback to force overtime, but Rutgers prevailed, 78-74, in women’s basketball on Sunday in front of 2,680 in the Rutgers Athletic Center.
The loss snaps a three-game winning streak for Iowa, which finishes the regular season 23-6 overall, 14-4 in the Big Ten. During that three-game stretch, the Hawkeyes averaged 95.7 points per game.
Scoring points was more difficult against Rutgers, primarily because of lack of opportunity. The Scarlet Knights (21-8, 11-7) won for a sixth straight time at home by attempting 15 more field goals than Iowa (69-54). The Hawkeyes shot better than Rutgers in all areas, making 44 percent from the field (24 of 54), 37 percent from 3-point (10 of 27), and 84 percent from the line (16 of 19).
“It is hard to win a game on the road when you let your opponent shoot 15 more times than you did,” Iowa head coach Lisa Bluder said.
Iowa committed 23 turnovers — just the fourth time this season the Hawkeyes have had 20-or-more miscues in a game.
Freshman Gabbie Marshall scored a career and game-high 22 points by making 6 of 10 3-pointers and 4 of 4 from the line. She also had three steals.
“Gabbie Marshall played well with a career-high, 22 points,” Bluder said. “She did a good job out there; we’re happy for Gabbie.”
Sophomore center Monika Czinano scored 19 points and senior guard Kathleen Doyle added 14 points, nine assists, and four steals. Senior Amanda Ollinger and freshman McKenna Warnock led Iowa on the boards with seven apiece.
Three Rutgers players scored 17 points: Khadaizha Sanders, Arella Guirantes, and Tekia Mack. Guirantes scored six points in overtime.
QUOTING COACH BLUDER
“We got off to a bad start with turnovers. We had 13 turnovers in the first half and then we had three in the overtime. That was the detriment to us; (Rutgers) shoots 69 times, we shoot 54 times. We had too many turnovers and they had 22 offensive rebounds — they had more offensive rebounds than we had defensive rebounds. Those two things resulted in us losing this game.”
STATISTIC OF THE GAME
Iowa did a nice job defensively, forcing 20 turnovers, but the Hawkeyes committed 23. They were also out-rebounded 43-30, with Rutgers pulling down 22 offensive rebounds.
Two Hawkeye freshmen continued to come up big off the bench. Marshall led the way with 22 points and Warnock added eight points and seven rebounds.
The Hawkeyes are the third seed in the Big Ten Tournament that will be held March 4-8 in Bankers Life Fieldhouse in Indianapolis. Iowa will have a double bye and play Game 10 of the tournament Friday evening with opponent and time to be determined.
IOWA-RUTGERS PHOTO GALLERY