Hawkeyes Fall to Utah, 91-82, in NIT 2nd Round

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – The No. 3 seeded University of Iowa men’s basketball team fell to No. 2 seeded Utah, 91-82, on Sunday night in the second round of the National Invitation Tournament at the Jon M. Huntsman Center. The Hawkeyes end the season with an overall record of 19-15.

Senior Patrick McCaffery scored 19 points on an efficient 7-of-9 shooting. McCaffery added four rebounds and a steal. Sophomore Josh Dix scored 14 points on 6-of-9 (66.6%) shooting. Dix grabbed four rebounds, blocked one shot, and had one steal.

Freshman Owen Freeman scored 12 points to go along with seven rebounds and four assists. Freeman blocked three shots, his 12th game this season with 3+ blocks.

Graduate Ben Krikke scored 12 points and pulled in six rebounds. Freshman Brock Harding rounded out the Hawkeyes in double digits with 12 points on a perfect 5-of-5 shooting night from the field.

Freeman scored seven of Iowa’s first 12 points. A dunk from McCaffery sparked the Hawkeyes and narrowed the deficit to just four points after trailing by as many as 10 early in the game. Utah’s 3-point shooting made it difficult for the Hawkeyes to close the gap, as they shot 7-of-14 from deep in the first 20 minutes. A 9-3 Iowa run in the final two minutes pulled the Hawkeyes within 12 at the break, trailing 48-36.

The Hawkeyes fought back from down 14 points to bring the game within five with just under 13 minutes remaining. A 6-0 Utah run pushed their lead back to 11 points and they would go on to lead by at least nine points for the rest of the game. Krikke, Dix and McCaffery combined to score 32 of Iowa’s 46 second half points.

Iowa finished the game shooting 33-of-68 (48.5%) from the field and 7-of-21 (33.3%) from deep. The Hawkeyes shot 9-of-14 (64.3%) from the free throw line.

Utah was led by Gabe Madsen with 31 points on 9-of-19 shooting. Madsen shot 7-of-15 from beyond the arc.

Very, very proud of this group that we made it to the postseason, 19 wins. 10-10 in the Big Ten. Some big-time wins, as I said before, we got off to a slow start in Big Ten play. We rallied and had some terrific wins. Are young guys continued to improve. We had the freshman of the year in the league. Had multiple all-conference players. The improvement of Josh Dix becoming a premier player in this league. Just, really proud of this group and how they stayed connected and positive. Incredibly enjoyable group to be around. Day in and day out.”

“I’m really proud of those guys. I thought Owen made some great moves. Coming down the stretch, he missed a couple shots, but I’ve been continuing to encourage Owen to be aggressive off the bounce and attack the basket. He was going against seven-foot veteran guys. Patrick was terrific in both halves, I’m really proud of him. I thought Pryce gave us some incredible minutes. Brock Harding was 5-of-5. Ben Krikke had that one stretch where he was really cooking, and we were really going to him. He’s been doing that all year long. That’s what you have to do to keep your team in the game, and that’s what we did. It gave us a chance. I felt bad for Payton and Tony because they are great people and had a chance but didn’t have it tonight for them.”


  • Iowa finishes the 2023-24 season with a 19-15 overall record.
  • Utah made seven first-half 3-pointers to push its lead to as many as 18 points (45-27) with 2:52 to play.
    • The Hawkeyes trailed 48-36 at the break.
    • Iowa closed the deficit to five points twice in the second half – 59-54 and 61-56.
  • The Hawkeyes fall to 11-9 all-time in the NIT.
  • Iowa had five players reach double figures in the game.
    • It was the sixth game with five or more scoring 10+.
  • Senior Patrick McCaffery finished with a team-high 19 points on 7-of-9 shooting – his third highest scoring output of the season.
    • It was McCaffery’s 13th game this season in double figures and the 52nd game of his career.
  • Freshman Owen Freeman finished with 12 points, seven rebounds, four assists and three blocks.  He was 5-of-12 from the field.
    • Freeman has scored in double figures in 18 games.
    • He has had seven or more rebounds 17 times and three or more blocks 12 times.
  • Sophomore Josh Dix netted 14 points on 6-of-9 shooting.
    • Dix reached double digits in 11 games this season.
  • Graduate Ben Krikke scored 12 points, making 6-of-11 field goals.  He also had six rebounds.
    • It was Krikke’s 24th game in double figures this season.
    • He scored in double digits in 106 of 156 career games.
  • Freshman Brock Harding scored a career-high 12 points, going 5-for-5 from the floor with two 3-point field goals.
  • Utah made 12 3-point field goals (to Iowa’s seven) and went 19-of-25 from the free throw line. Iowa was 9-of-14.
  • The Runnin’ Utes out-rebounded Iowa, 43-36, and scored 20 points off nine Hawkeye turnovers.
  • Iowa lost despite having a higher field goal percentage in the game (48.5 to 46.2).