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Michigan 77, Iowa 71: End of the Line

Time to look towards next season.

NCAA Basketball: Big Ten Conference Tournament-Michigan vs Iowa Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

The Hawkeyes showed a lot of fight in their second round Big Ten Tournament game against Michigan, but the Wolverines were just too much for Iowa to handle in a 77-71 overtime loss.

Iowa was able to get out to a 40-35 halftime lead after ending the first half on a 16-5 run. The Hawkeyes were led in scoring by Luka Garza (10 first half pts, 4/6 shooting) and Ryan Kriener (7 pts, 3/4 shooting). A big first half from those two was particularly big for Iowa, as Jordan Bohannon, Isaiah Moss, and Tyler Cook each scored just six first half points. Iowa also received a ton of help from Michigan, who couldn’t buy a basket from deep in the first half - the Wolverines went 0-for-7 from 3-point range in the half and would end up finishing the game 3-of-19.

After the intermission, Michigan came out ready and immediately blitzed the Hawks for an 11-0 run to take the lead. It would be a lead that they wouldn’t relinquish until there were just 16 seconds in the half, when Swaggy B tied things up to send the game into overtime.

In overtime, Iowa jumped out to a quick two point lead on a Garza layup, but Michigan would control the rest of the period. Despite Mo Wagner and Muhammad-Ali Abdur-Rahkman fouling out, the Wolverines were able to control the boards in the extra period and slowly extend their lead at the charity stripe on their way to victory.

This is definitely a game Iowa could’ve won, and you could make the argument that they should’ve won it. Iowa left a bunch of points on the line, shooting just 10/18 from the stripe in the game despite being in the bonus for the final 16 minutes of the game. On the other end, Michigan shot 18/32 from the line and in addition to their free throw success, scored a whopping 48 points in the paint on the Hawks, essentially negating the fact that they shot 16% from deep.

The loss effectively ends Iowa’s season at 14-19 and 4-14 in conference play. Now, it’s time to figure out if there will be any departures and consequentially any additions to the team. There have been some murmurs that there could be a handful of transfers on this Iowa squad, but only time will tell.

Now, to enjoy the women’s tournament...

Other notes

  • Ryan Kriener was easily Iowa’s MVP. He brought a ton of energy and scored 14 points on 6-of-7 shooting.
  • Garza (13), Cook (13), and Bohannon (11) also scored in double digits for Iowa. Bohannon, who injured his hip in the second half, shot just 3-of-14, with all three makes being three-pointers.
  • Jack Nunge started, but only played nine minutes. Cordell Pemsl (6 min) and Brady Ellingson (2) also fell out of the rotation.