Wednesday, November 10, 2004
Iowa 84, Upper Iowa 43
No big surprise on the final score, but Upper Iowa did come out strong. The Peacocks were leading Iowa 15-13 with about 8:30 to go in the first half before Iowa remembered they were the better team and put the clamps down on defense. The Hawks surged ahead with a 20-0 run that put the game out of reach. Their defense fueled that run - Iowa picked up the intensity on D and Upper Iowa had a hell of a time passing without getting the ball deflected or swiped out of their hands, as evidenced by Iowa's 19 steals in the game.
Five Hawkeyes hit double figures in scoring, led by Pierre Pierce's 19. His line also included a team-high 8 assists to go with 3 steals. Greg Brunner bounced back from an off game in the Blowout to post 11 points, 7 rebounds and 3 steals in only 22 minutes. Doug Thomas also had a big game, going for 16 points and 8 rebounds in just 19 minutes of action. The other leading scorers were backup guards Mike Henderson with 11 and Carlton Reed, who chipped in 2 three-pointers, with 10. Jeff Horner didn't take many shots but finished with 7 assists.
- Pierce had the biggest game, but Thomas's effort was the most exciting. The height of crowd noise coincided with his thunderous dunks. Thomas put down two alley-oops and hammered home a left-handed dunk on a fast break. He likely would have dunked on two other fast breaks, but he was fouled on one chance and Pierce led him too much with a pass on the other. Brunner and Erek Hansen are slated to start in Iowa's frontcourt, so it should be interesting to see where Thomas fits into the picture and how much playing time he can find.
- Hansen's numbers weren't overwhelming tonight (4 points, 3 rebounds, 2 blocks), but you have to like his style of play. He was attacking the basket whenever he got the ball - none of that timidity we saw from him last year. He even knocked down an 18-footer to further improve his image in at least one fan's mind.
- Reed looked good again. He knocked down a couple threes and came away with 4 steals. Iowa's backcourt is deep and talented, with five guys that should see plenty of minutes, and they're all capable of helping the team offensively.
- Ugh. Iowa hit only 7 of 17 free throws. The main culprits were Pierce (4-7), Henderson (0-2), Thomas (2-4), and Alex Thompson (0-2). I really hope we don't have to endure another season of awful free throw shooting.
- Quite a few Peacock fans made the 100 mile drive down from Fayette. In fact, I'd say they made more noise throughout the first half than those clad in black and old gold, especially when UIU was keeping pace the first 11 minutes of the game.
- Things I hate: (1) freshmen girls who call all the players by their first name (e.g., oooohh nice pass Mikey....don't shoot that Carlton!). (2) Our cheerleaders.
- Outside of Thomas's big dunks, I think my favorite moment of the night was when UIU's John Banks went to the free throw line in the second half. He was having a pretty rough night (he ended up shooting 5-17), and when he stepped to the stripe it was quiet enough for him to hear some 12 year old kids heckling him with the kind of unintelligent comments that entertain 12 year olds trying to impress their friends but annoy the hell out of everyone else (run-on sentence alert!). He knocked down the first free throw, then turned and gave the kids a wink and a smile. It was cool that he was still having fun with his team down 40 points, but it was even better to get those kids to shut up.