IOWA CITY, Iowa – Junior Joe Toussaint banked home the game-winning jumper with eight seconds remaining to send the University of Iowa men’s basketball team to a 75-74 Big Ten/ACC Challenge road victory at Virginia on Monday night at John Paul Jones Arena.
The Hawkeyes improve to 7-0 overall heading into their Big Ten opener on Friday at No. 2 Purdue.
After trading 3-point field goals over a 51 second span in the final two minutes, Toussaint stepped up. With Iowa trailing 74-73, the Bronx native drove through traffic, pulled up and banked home the go-ahead field goal. Virginia had a two shot attempts in the waning seconds, but sophomore Patrick McCaffery blocked the second attempt to seal the Hawkeyes’ fifth consecutive Big Ten/ACC Challenge victory.
“Go make a play,” Toussaint said after the game. “It’s that simple. The ball is in my hand. Go make a play. We’re down one. Make the right read.”
Iowa opened with a dominant first half, heading into the locker room with a 44-30 lead over the Cavaliers. The Hawkeyes turned a six-point lead into a game-high 40-19 advantage with a 15-0 run. Sixth-year senior Jordan Bohannon drained four of his game-high six 3-pointers in the first 20 minutes. He finished with 20 points on 7-of-12 shooting.
The Hawkeyes scored on 20 of their 28 first-half possessions, and Iowa’s defense limited the Cavaliers to 14 scores on 29 possessions.
After cutting the deficit to 14 at the half, Virginia continued fighting. The Cavaliers closed their deficit to single digits (51-42) at the 15:25 mark and the margin was trimmed to six with 10:40 left. A Kris Murray 3-pointer pushed Iowa’s lead back to nine (64-55) with 8:14 left, but Virginia reeled off six straight to make it a one possession game with 5:23 to play.
Virginia came all the way back to take the lead on Taine Murray’s 3-pointer with 1:36 left – its first lead since the early going of the contest. Bohannon immediately answered with his sixth and final 3-pointer of the night, but the Cavs responded on the following possession with yet another trey to retake the one-point lead.
The Hawkeyes hit 10 3-pointers to help secure the win with Bohannon connecting on a season-high six triples. Keegan Murray finished with 18 points, nine rebounds, three assists, and a block, while Toussaint scored 10 points, reaching double figures for the 12th time in his career. Senior Filip Rebraca finished with eight points, shooting a perfect 4-of-4 from the field and Patrick McCaffery ended the game with seven points, including a clutch second half triple and his game-saving block.
QUOTING COACH MCCAFFERY
“You’re on the road playing one of the best teams in the country, packed house, and at some point in the game there is going to be some adversity. We overcame adversity a number of different times and got contributions from a lot of different people. And what a hard-fought game? It was very physical, hard-fought game. I am proud of these guys when they come out with the ‘W’ in those difficult situations.”
- Joe Toussaint scored his 10th point of the game on a driving layup with eight seconds remaining to reclaim the lead and Patrick McCaffery blocked Kadin Shedrick’s game-winning put-back attempt at the buzzer to preserve the victory.
- Jordan Bohannon led the Hawkeyes in scoring with a season-high 20 points. Bohannon equaled a season-best with six 3-pointers made. He sank his first four 3-point field goals of the first half.
- Keegan Murray, the nation’s leading scorer, finished with 18 points and a game-best nine rebounds.
- Iowa’s 75 points are the most Virginia has allowed this season.
- Iowa committed a season-low four turnovers, tying the third fewest total in a single-game in the Fran McCaffery era. The four turnovers are the fewest by a Hawkeye team since three turnovers versus Temple on March 18, 2016 in the NCAA Tournament.
- Iowa scored 44 first-half points, the most points Virginia has allowed in the first half at home in 13 years under head coach Tony Bennett.
- Iowa made 10 3-pointers, marking the fourth time this season and third time in four contests that the Hawkeyes made 10 or more triples in a game.
- The Hawkeyes had a 15-0 scoring run in the first half. Iowa has had scoring runs of 10-0 or more a combined 10 times in seven games.
- Tonight was Iowa’s first road game of the season.
- Iowa improved to 3-1 all-time against Virginia and 2-0 in games played in Charlottesville.
Iowa (7-0) will play at No. 2 Purdue in the Big Ten Conference opener on Friday. Tipoff is scheduled for 8 p.m. (CT) at Mackey Arena in West Lafayette, Indiana.