Steve Alford's nightmare season as Iowa head coach finally had a successful encounter in 2002. Smiles have been few and far between for Alford this year. However, during the second half on Saturday, grin replaced grim for Alford as the Hawkeyes repelled the Blue invader in convincing fashion.
Reggie Evans, performing before his mother and brother, played through the pain of a deep thigh contusion to lead the Hawkeyes with 20 points and 11 rebounds. The senior from Pensacola, Florida, had received the injury during a Friday workout. The bruise was severe enough to threaten Reggie's appearance in his career home season finale. However, his family probably affected the healing process more than the medical treatment. "I was still kind of shady at the beginning when I warmed up, but my mom came too far," said Evans. "I had to play"
"To be quite honest with you, I didn't think he'd play. It's a great credit to him, and a great credit to our training staff" said Iowa coach Steve Alford.
The performance marked the 38th deuce-deuce of Evan's two year career at Iowa.
Glen Worley chipped in with 14 points, matching his season high game production. Perhaps more important, Worley also had 10 rebounds for a double-double. This could have been a glimpse of the future as next year a big task will be called "Replacing Reggie!" The usually foul prone Worley also displayed more maturity as he was charged with only one foul.
Sophomore Brody Boyd matched his season high with 11 points. The Dugger Deadeye hit from long range with 3 for 4 from three point land.
Luke Recker contributed 11 points in his last home appearance in Black and Gold. He also had the line of the day. The Indiana transfer drew applause as he spoke in the post game ceremony honoring the graduating seniors. "I love being a Hawkeye. It's a lot better than being a Hoosier" said Recker.
Iowa concludes the 2002 regular season at East Lansing next Saturday.