The calendar may have read early January, but the competitive style had late February written all over it.
In a game that featured 12 different lead changes, Nebraska held off Iowa 93-90 in a Big Ten basketball game Thursday night in Lincoln. It is Nebraska’s first 3-0 start in league action in 41 years.
The Hawkeyes twice had a chance to tie down 3 with less than 15 seconds left in the second overtime. With 11 seconds to go, Jordan Bohannon missed a jumper and Nebraska’s Evan Taylor grabbed the rebound and was fouled. He missed both shots, however, and Nicholas Baer grabbed the rebound for the Hawkeyes. Iowa raced up the floor and struggled to get off a shot, Brady Ellingson tossing up a contested 3-pointer that bounced off the rim as time expired.
Iowa falls to 9-7 overall and 1-2 in Big Ten play. Nebraska improves to 8-6 overall and 3-0.
In a season filled with tremendous performances, Iowa’s Peter Jok put up one of his best at Nebraska. The Iowa senior guard scored 34 points before fouling out with less than a minute to play.
It was a dogfight throughout the game. After Glynn Watson knocked down two free throws with 13.9 seconds left in regulation, Iowa set up for the final shot. As Jok took a shot, he lost control of the ball. Nebraska guard Evan Taylor streaked toward the game-winning layup and was fouled by Baer with 1.3 seconds left. But Taylor missed both free throws and the game went to overtime.
Iowa twice took 4-point leads in the first overtime, the second on a deep 3-pointer from Bohannon with little more than 90 seconds left in the frame. Nebraska hit four consecutive free throws to tie the game again with 13.7 seconds left. Iowa struggled to get a good shot, and the game went to a second overtime.
Watson, who scored a career-high 34 points, fouled out with 2:11 left in the second overtime on a charge.
Iowa had 19 turnovers to only 11 assists, but outscored Nebraska 27-5 in second-chance points.
Putback dunks are fun.
Dom Uhl cleans up Moss' miss. ? https://t.co/A2QrBRMbpZ
— Iowa On BTN (@IowaOnBTN) January 6, 2017
Why it happened
Each time Iowa pulled close or took a lead, the Cornhuskers would rally with their own basket. Iowa led by 2 at two different junctures late in regulation, but Watson hit a pair of free throws to tie the game at 74-74. The Hawkeyes led by 4 near the end of the first overtime but Nebraska rallied to tie the game. Iowa took a 90-89 lead with 1:26 left in the second overtime, but Nebraska scored the final 4 points for the win.
What it means
Iowa falls to 1-2 in Big Ten play.
Jok, with those 34 points, and freshman guard Isaiah Moss, who scored 15 points in the first half and finished with 17.
Bohannon hit just 1 of 6 from the floor for 3 points in regulation but came up with a huge 3-pointer in overtime. He finished 2 of 10 from the field.
Who is next
Iowa plays host to Rutgers (11-5, 0-3) at 4:36 p.m. ET/3:36 p.m. CT Sunday on BTN.
Is anyone surprised? https://t.co/LhtupUh16k
— Big Ten Network (@BigTenNetwork) January 6, 2017