My 10 Favorite Hawkeye Victories, Part 2

<b>(*This is an HTO TheInsiders Club FREE Preview column*)</b> <p> Thinking about Iowa's schedule this fall led me to think about some of my all-time favorite Hawkeye victories…in football and basketball. So, I decided to come up with a list of my "Top 10" favorite Iowa games ... I wrote about Nos. 6 through 10 a few days ago. Starting with No. 5, here are my top 5 Hawkeye victories ...

5) Iowa 81, George Washington 79. March 15, 1996 at Tempe, Arizona. This Hawkeye team was so much fun to watch at times ... and at other times, pretty frustrating. I remember going through about every emotion a sports fan can go through during this game.

Iowa's rotation included Andre Woolridge, Chris Kingsbury, Kenyon Murray, Jess Settles, Russ Millard, Monter Glasper, J.R. Koch and Ryan Bowen.

The Hawks led by 1 at the half, but came out flat in the second half. In fact, I think they trailed Mike Jarvis' team by about 16 when I remember four of my buddies and I yelling at the TV, yelling at the officials, yelling at Tom Davis ... and at one point, even yelling at the people in the commercials. (The NCAA Tournament can bring out the best -- and worst -- in all of us, I guess.)

Then, little by little, Iowa kept cutting into the lead and finally, when the final horn sounded, the Hawks had the victory. It was a classic come-from-behind effort with Coach Davis' pressure defense playing the goat and the hero in the same half.

Settles finished with 21 points and 15 rebounds. Millard scored 20 points, while Murray and Kingsbury each had 14. Woolridge totaled 11 points and seven assists. Bowen had Iowa's other point.

4) Iowa 63, Indiana 61. March 11, 2001 at Chicago, Illinois. The Hawkeyes won the Big Ten Conference Tournament with four victories in four days, capped off with this comeback victory over the Hoosiers.

Freshman Brody Boyd scored 22 points to lead the way for Coach Steve Alford's squad. And Reggie Evans blocked Kirk Haston's last-second three-pointer to clinch it. As Evans later said, "It was big time!"

With 1:43 remaining, Duez Henderson made a baseline jumper to give the Hawks a 61-59 lead. In the final 1:15, Boyd grabbed a pair of defensive rebounds. The freshman's two free throws gave Iowa a 63-59 cushion with 20 seconds left.

Senior Dean Oliver finished with 12 points for the Hawks. Oliver, Boyd, Henderson, Evans and Glen Worley each played more than 30 minutes in the game.

3) Iowa 93, Oklahoma 91 (OT). March 20, 1987 at Seattle, Washington. The Hawks advanced to the Elite Eight and improved their record to 30-4 with this heart-stopping victory.

CBS analyst Bill Raftery had some terrific calls during this game. Sadly, I can't quote them all for you because my sister taped "The Sound of Music" over our game tape a few months after this game was played.

The Hawkeyes were incredibly talented in 1987 and spent some time atop the national polls. In Coach Tom Davis' first season in Iowa City, the rotation included: Roy Marble, Brad Lohaus, Gerry Wright, Kevin Gamble, B.J. Armstrong, Jeff Moe, Bill Jones, Ed Horton, Al Lorenzen and Michael Reaves.

Gamble nailed the game-winning 3-pointer from the top of the key with a couple of seconds remaining and everyone in my family started jumping around, yelling and high-fiving in our living room. It was one of those perfect moments in sports that you never forget.

Gamble finished with 26 points. Armstrong had 16 points and 10 assists. Marble totaled 11 points and seven boards. Wright and Lorenzen each finished with 10 points.

2) Iowa 12, Michigan 10. October 19, 1985 at Iowa City. Kinnick Stadium. No. 1 versus No. 2.

With 2 seconds left, Iowa kicker Rob Houghtlin drilled a 29-yard field goal (his fourth of the day) to give the Hawkeyes the dramatic victory. The moment that Houghtlin's kick sailed through the uprights on that late afternoon in 1985 was probably the single-greatest moment for Hawkeye football fans in the last 40 years.

Iowa's team included Chuck Long, Ronnie Harmon, Larry Station, Billy Happel, Scott Helverson, Hap Peterson, Mike Flagg and Robert Smith. Coach Hayden Fry was at his best and Bill Snyder masterminded the offensive attack.

Earlier in the game, Long hit Helverson perfectly in the back of the end zone, but the officials ruled the Hawkeye receiver was out of bounds. Replays showed he was in bounds and the TD should have counted. But, it didn't matter.

Iowa's final drive included two HUGE passes from Long to Flagg and freshman David Hudson ran the ball on the final play to set up Houghtlin's heroics.

On that day, and for much of the 1985 season, Iowa was the best team in the country.

1) Iowa 81, Georgetown 80. March 16, 1980 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The East Regional Final of the NCAA Tournament took place in The Spectrum. The Hawkeyes versus the Hoyas.

Steve Waite capped a Hawkeye comeback with a three-point play with five seconds remaining. The 6-10 junior from Iowa City gave Iowa the final points it needed against Georgetown, enabling the Hawks to advance to the Final Four for the third time in school history.

After trailing by as much as 14 points in the second half, Iowa climbed back into the game and had the ball with the score tied at 78, with a couple of minutes remaining. Coach Lute Olson's team stalled, running the clock down to under 15 seconds.

Point guard Ronnie Lester penetrated and kicked to Kevin Boyle. Boyle also penetrated and tossed it to Waite, who drove to the basket and scored with five ticks to play. Waite was fouled by the Hoyas' Craig Shelton on the play ... and if he could make his free throw, he would give the Hawkeyes plenty of breathing room.

After a Georgetown timeout, Waite made the free throw. And Iowa led, 81-78. There were no 3-pointers at that time, so Georgetown scored a meaningless basket at the end to make it a 1-point game.

In the second half, Iowa shot 70 percent from the floor and the Hawkeyes made all 15 of their free throws.

As a result, Olson's team was on its way to Indianapolis for the Final Four.

I was only 10 years old at the time, but I can remember this team -- and the run it made in the NCAAs -- very clearly. What a thrill. Virginia Commonwealth, NC State, Syracuse and Georgetown all fell victim to Olson's Hawkeyes.

Obviously, Lester was the star of the team. But, there were plenty of great performances by his supporting cast, which included Waite, Boyle, Vince Brookins, Steve Krafcisin, Kenny Arnold, Bobby Hansen and Mark Gannon.

Against the Hoyas, Brookins led the way with 22 points. Waite had 15, Arnold 14 and Boyle 12. Lester finished with eight points and nine assists. Hansen had eight points in 13 minutes and didn't miss a shot. Sleepy Floyd led Georgetown with 31 points.

My 10 Favorite Hawkeye Victories, Part 1

Marty Gallagher founded the popular Web site IowaSportsOpinions.com. You can e-mail him at Marty@IowaSportsOpinions.com.)


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