Iowa Basketball lost 82-72 on the road to the #15 Maryland Terrapins, snapping their five-game winning streak and dropping to 15-6 overall and 6-4 in the conference.
Well, that sucked. It wasn’t a blowout but for some reason, that one hurt. The Iowa Hawkeyes just couldn’t hit the big shot or get the big stop that they were able to do against Wisconsin, Michigan, and Rutgers. This game simply came down to Maryland out rebounding, out hustling and hitting bigger shots than Iowa could tonight.
Luka Garza AND Ryan Kreiner both getting in early foul trouble and forcing Fran McCaffery to play the Connor McCaffery, Evelyn, Fredrick, Till, and Pemsl line-up. Don’t get me wrong, that lineup put in some good minutes and at least kept Iowa in the game. Pemsl had a career-high in rebounds with eight, but no offense to Cordell, he is no Luka Garza.
Both Joes struggled, Joe Weiskamp shot 5/14 from the field (stupid Under Armor balls), Toussaint looked like a true-freshman, CJ Fredrick seems to be rattled by the chants of “Airball” early and looked skittish to shoot the ball. Iowa was just outmatched without Garza to shoulder the offensive load, and that’s okay. The officiating wasn’t great (in my biased opinion) and there just wasn’t Garza to bail us out tonight or Joe Weiskamp. Or CJ Fredrick. Or Jordan Bohannon. Or… okay you get it nobody stepped up.
The bright side? Nobody played particularly well and we lost on the road to a top 15 team and the Hawks were never really out of it until the last three minutes. It was ugly, Iowa played as I would describe poorly but in the end, this is a quad-1 loss. It sucks to lose but Iowa was a six-point underdog playing in the most hostile environment they’ll see all season. No harm in losing this game as long as those young guys take something from it and learn from it. The Big Ten is a war. Every. Single Night. And Iowa has ample opportunities to win big games and it all starts Sunday back in Carver against the Illini.
Iowa’s defense was poor and it was the Anthony Cowan Jr. show all night long. Probably frustrated with how he played against Iowa the first time, Cowan came out with a vengeance finishing with 31(!) points while adding 6 assists and 6 rebounds. Jalen Smith seems to find every clutch rebound and dominated Iowa finishing with 18 points and 14 rebounds.
We (I) just have to remember Maryland is a very good team and it is very tough to win on the road in the Big Ten. This game was marked as a loss at the beginning of the season after DePaul and especially after Nebraska. Iowa isn’t ever going to go undefeated in the Big Ten and as far losses go this can be considered a good one. The season isn’t over, in fact, it is just about to get real.
Iowa Men’s Basketball is back in action at Carver Hawkeye Arena Sunday at Noon taking on the #19 ranked Illinois Fighting Illini.