Iowa dropped to 12-18 overall and 3-14 in Big Ten play with a 86-82 loss at Minnesota on Wednesday night at Williams Arena.
The Hawkeyes failed to sweep the Gophers after winning 94-80 at Iowa City earlier this season. It was the 200th meeting between the border rivals. Minnesota leads the series 105-95. It’s the most-played rivalry in Iowa history and the only team the Gophers have played more often than the Hawkeyes is Wisconsin (202 meetings).
Minnesota improved to 15-15 overall and 4-13 in league action.
The Gophers started strong with a 22-2 run in a streak that featured 8 Iowa turnovers. The Hawkeyes cut their deficit to 2 points with 3 seconds left but could not get any closer.
What it means
Iowa now is tied for last place with Rutgers entering the final game of the season. Rutgers beat the Hawkeyes in their only meeting so Iowa could be seeded 14th in next week’s Big Ten Tournament. The Hawkeyes also could finish last in the Big Ten in regular-season play for the first time since 1993-94 and only the second time since 1938-1939.
Iowa guard Isaiah Moss scored 32 points for the Hawkeyes. Iowa forward Ryan Kriener came off the bench to score 15 points. Minnesota guard Nate Mason led all scorers with 33 points.
Iowa guard Jordan Bohannon failed to score. Iowa forward Tyler Cook was hampered early with foul trouble and scored just 6 points.
Who is next?
Iowa ends the regular season at 6:30 p.m. CT Sunday against Northwestern at Carver-Hawkeye Arena. It’s the teams’ only meeting this season.
Iowa-Minnesota game updates
9:44 p.m. (2H, 7:40) — The Hawkeyes have cut their deficit to 6 points at 55-49. Forward Ryan Kriener has battled for 8 points off the bench, while both Luka Garza and Isaiah Moss each have 11. Gophers guard Nate Mason has scored 26.
9:29 p.m. (2H, 14:11) — Iowa slowly has climbed back into the game and trails just 43-34. Remember, Minnesota has lost 9 straight games so the Gophers aren’t exactly used to closing out opponents.
9:22 p.m. (2H, 15:52) — Minnesota leads 40-27. After Isaiah Moss completed a nifty layup when he switched hands in midair, BTN analyst Jon Crispin said, “If he wants to be, he’s a pro.”
8:58 p.m. (halftime) — Minnesota leads Iowa 31-19. The Gophers led by 20 points midway through the first half before the Hawkeyes climbed within striking distance. Luka Garza leads with 9 points, while Isaiah Moss has 6. Minnesota guard Nate Mason leads all scorers with 14. Iowa has 9 turnovers and 9 baskets.
8:53 p.m. (1H, 2:22) — Iowa center Luka Garza was reviewed for an elbow on Minnesota’s but didn’t get the it on replay. Garza missed a pair of free throws and trails 26-13.
8:48 p.m. (1H, 3:48) — The Hawkeyes have chopped their deficit to 22-13 with an 11-0 run. Minnesota had led 22-2. The Gophers haven’t scored in 7 minutes.
8:43 p.m. (1H, 6:27) — Iowa has rallied with 9 straight points but still trails 22-11. Minnesota has missed its last 6 shots.
8:35 p.m. (1H, 9:12) — Iowa fell behind 22-2 to start the game but has since chopped its deficit to 22-9 with a 7-0 run. In every single Big Ten road game this year, Iowa has trailed by at least 18 points. That includes games at the other three 3-win teams.
8:30 p.m. (1H, 11:24) — Minnesota leads 19-2. Iowa is 1-8 from the field with 8 turnovers. The Hawkeyes are playing like they can’t wait for the season to end.
8:26 p.m. (1H, 12:50) — Minnesota is on an 11-0 run and 6 Iowa turnovers has the Hawkeyes trailing 14-2.
8:20 p.m. (1H, 13:16) — Iowa has committed 5 turnovers in the first six minutes to fall behind Minnesota 12-2.
Iowa-Minnesota basketball game time, details
- Time: 8 p.m. CT
- Date: Wednesday, Feb. 21
- Location: Williams Arena, Minneapolis
- Line: NA
What TV channel is showing Iowa-Minnesota?
BTN airs the Iowa-Minnesota game. Dave Revsine calls the action and Jon Crispin provides analysis.
How can I watch Iowa-Minnesota online?
BTN.com and the BTN2GO app will stream the game. Click here for more information.
How can I listen to Iowa-Minnesota on radio?
You can listen on Sirius/XM channel 81. In Iowa, 600 AM (WMT-Cedar Rapids), 1040 AM (WHO-Des Moines) and 800 AM (KXIC-Iowa City) are the Hawkeyes’ flagship radio stations. Gary Dolphin is the play-by-play broadcaster with Bob Hansen as the color analyst. Click here for other Iowa radio affiliates.
For Minnesota, Mike Grimm and Spencer Tollackson call the action. In Minnesota, 100.3 FM (KFAN-Minneapolis) or 1130 AM (KTLK-AM/103.5 FM (KTLK-Minneapolis) are the flagship stations. Click here for other Minnesota affiliates.
The TuneIn app also streams basketball games.
How can I buy Iowa-Minnesota tickets?
Click here for ticket information from TicketCity.com.
Iowa played one of its most complete games of the season in a 94-80 victory against the Gophers a few weeks ago. Now entering another battle at Williams Arena, defense could be the key for the Hawkeyes to pick up the season sweep.
Minnesota and Iowa rank 13th and 14th, respectively, in Big Ten scoring defense. The Hawkeyes are by far the league’s worst, allowing 83.7 points per game in 16 contests. That’s the second-worst defensive scoring average in Big Ten play since 1995. The Gophers allow 78.6 points per game. Only two other teams give up more than 69 points a game in league competition.
As usual, the Hawkeyes will employ several types of defenses when trying to keep the Gophers from scoring.
“We’ll play four different kinds of zone, man-to-man, we’ll do some things out of our man like everybody else,” Iowa coach Fran McCaffery said. “I just think you look at every game differently and some teams will play more zone, some teams will play more man, some days will be a function of what’s working that day.”
Iowa seems to lack leadership, which could help explain the Hawkeyes’ 3-13 Big Ten record. In the past, players like Jarryd Cole, Matt Gatens, Eric May and Peter Jok provided leadership even in non-NCAA seasons. Iowa doesn’t quite have that leader now.
“I think we had three guys this year that were really trying to lead and that’s Tyler Cook, Jordan Bohannon and Nicholas Baer,” McCaffery said. “It was a new experience for all three of them. Moving forward, I think they’ll be really good at it because they have the respect of everybody in that locker room.”
Williams Arena, a 90-year-old sports structure, has played host to plenty of tenacious battles between the Hawkeyes and Gophers since it opened in 1928.
“I think it’s a great facility,” McCaffery said. “I love old barns like that. I think it’s a great environment to play in. I think our players appreciate it and look forward to it. We haven’t had any issues there.”