Hawkeyes' Height Does in Davidson

Aaron White scored 26 points Friday to help Iowa to its first NCAA Tournament victory in 14 years. The seventh-seeded Hawkeyes rolled over Davidson, 83-52, at Key Arena in Seattle. Here's the game story and links to all of our HI content after the big win.

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SEATTLE - Adam Woodbury sat slouched at his locker here Friday night. Iowa's 7-foot-1 center spent the last two hours chasing around smaller Davidson players all over the Key Arena court.

The Hawkeye junior was exhausted. He also was extremely satisfied.

Woodbury's memory reached back nine years, when the Sioux City native was sitting in his seventh-grade classroom. He was watching his favorite college team, the Hawkeyes, get upset by Northwestern State in the NCAA Tournament on a last-second shot.

"It was heartbreaking," he said. "As a Hawk fan, I started thinking that day that I wanted to get to the tournament and help the team win. It's a special ride we've been on the last couple of weeks."

Woodbury and his teammates helped the program take a big step forward Friday. Their 83-52 domination of Davidson represented the school's first NCAA Tournament win since 2001, when Apple introduced the iPod and gas was $1.46 a gallon.

The seventh-seeded Hawkeyes advanced to play No. 2 Gonzaga Sunday (6:10 p.m. CT) here at Key Arena. Iowa holds a 2-0 advantage in the series, winning in '84 and '86.

Senior Aaron White feasted on his shorter opponents Friday, ripping the Wildcats for 26 points. The first-team All-Big Ten member connected on 11 of 14 shots from the field and added six rebounds.

"I got to give credit to my teammates and Coach (Fran) McCaffery for running stuff for me to get in position to score," White said. "But there was a stretch there where I was just feeling confident with my shot and finishing around the basket."

Mike Gesell added 15 points and six assists without a turnover for the winners. Peter Jok scored 12 and pulled down five rebounds while teammate Jarrod Uthoff chipped in with eight points and a game-high nine rebounds.

Woodbury contributed a efficient eight points (4 of 6 from floor) and eight rebounds. The self-proclaimed under-the-rim 7-footer delivered one of the plays of the night when he crashed the rim on an offensive rebound and slammed the ball through it.

"I was fortunate," Woodbury said. "Nobody put a body on me and it fell my way. I was able to put it in. Everybody gets lucky every once in a while."

Davidson cut a 15-point, first-half deficit to six early in the second. The Hawkeyes, winners of seven of their last eight games, wouldn't be denied.

Jok started a decisive 18-3 run with a jumper at the 17:01 mark. Gesell then splashed in a three-pointer. White took over from there.

The Ohio product scored his team's next 13 points pushing the lead to 62-41 with 11:01 to play. He did most of his damage in the paint but also mixed in a three-pointer.

"We know in tournament games teams are going to make runs. It's all about keeping our poise," Iowa guard Anthony Clemmons said. "(White's) poise was there and he decided to carry us. Once he got cooking, we had to keep going to him."

The Hawkeyes (22-11) held Davidson (24-8) to 18 points under its season-average. Iowa's length bothered their Atlantic 10 opponent, which shot 33 percent overall from the floor, including 21.4 from behind the arc.

"I'm not sure we can play much better than we played in this game," McCaffery said. "I'm really proud of our team, their focus. Defensively, I don't know whether you can play much better than we played this game."

The Hawkeyes out rebounded Davidson, 46-30, and held a 14-2 advantage in bench points. After turning the ball over four times in the game's first five minutes, Iowa gave it away just once the rest of the way.

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