Hawkeyes Great Effort Not Enough Against Boilers

The undermanned Iowa Hawkeyes gave Big Ten leading Purdue all they could handle in a game of runs Saturday night in front of a rowdy crowd at Carver Hawkeye Arena. However, the Boilermakers were able to outlast the Hawkeyes and escape with an 80-77 win in overtime.

6-3 freshman point guard Jeff Horner and 6-7 junior wing forward Glen Worley fueled a 12-3 Iowa run over the first four and half minutes of the game.

The Hawkeyes (11-6, 3-3), who were playing without 6-11 junior center Jared Reiner as he suffered a sprained MCL in the final minutes of the Ohio State loss a week earlier, led throughout much of the first half, and when 5-11 junior combo guard Brody Boyd was completed a three point play, when he was fouled on a fast break lay-up he gave Iowa their largest lead at 28-18 with 8:14 remaining in the first half.

Purdue (14-4, 6-1) would use a 17-4 run over the next six minutes to take a 35-32 lead with 2:14 left in the half. The Hawkeyes would counter the Boilermakers run with a 9-1 run of their own over the final 1:54 to take a 41-36 lead into the locker room at halftime. Horner, who had five points during the run, capped it off with a three pointer as the buzzer sounded to end the half.

Iowa would use another run, this time a 13-4 run over five and a half minutes to take their largest lead of 12 points at 60-48 with 11:22 remaining in the game.

Purdue would once again have an answer for the Hawkeyes run, as they would use a 12-0 run over the next two and a half minutes to tie the game at 60-60.

The Hawkeyes used another run to take a seven point lead at 71-64 with 4:58 to go in the roller coaster like game.

6-2 sophomore guard Brandon McKnight dropped an eight foot baseline jumper to cut the Hawkeyes lead to just one point at 74-73.

With the Hawkeyes still holding onto that one point lead with under ten seconds left, when 6-3 junior guard Kenneth Lowe tried to drive baseline, but was fouled by Worley. Lowe would make one out of two free throws to tie the game at 74-74.

The Hawkeyes had one last chance at the win in regulation, but a three pointer by Horner from the right wing was a hair long, and the game headed into overtime.

Just as the Boilermakers had done before, they were able to answer the Hawkeyes run and use a 10-3 run over the final five minutes to tie the game and send it into overtime.

Purdue would take the first lead in overtime on two free throws by 6-1 senior guard Willie Deane at 76-74. A lay-up by Horner on Iowa next possession would once again tie the game at 76-76 with 1:58 remaining.

McKnight, who only scored four points on the night, came up big for the Boilermakers as he hit another baseline jumper to give Purdue a two point lead at 78-76 with just :29.8 seconds remaining.

6-5 junior walk-on forward Kurt Spurgeon would have his chance to tie the game when he was fouled on a put back with :15 seconds remaining. However, Spurgeon would miss his first free throw, but connect on the second to draw the Hawkeyes within one at 78-77.

Lowe, who hit one of two free throws in the final seconds of regulation to send the game into over would once again head to the line. This time however, he would knock down both free throws, giving the Boilermakers their largest lead of the game at 80-77 with 13.4 seconds remaining in the game.

6-2 senior combo guard Chauncey Leslie would get a good look at a three pointer with :04 seconds remaining, but it hit off the back of the rim, and the Boilermakers escaped with a 80-77 thrilling win in overtime.

Horner led five Hawkeyes in double figures, as he finished with a career high 17 points. Boyd added 16 off the bench, while Worley finished with 15 points before fouling out in regulation. Leslie chipped in with 14 points, and Sonderleiter accounted for 10 points.

Horner also finished with a team high eight rebounds and six assists on the night. With Reiner out of the line up the Hawkeyes did not fair too bad on the boards, as the Boilermakers were only about to out rebound them by five (40 to 35).

Purdue's legendary coach Gene Keady had only high words of praise about the Hawkeyes' effort on Saturday night. "I think they (Iowa) were more ready to play than we were," Keady said. "They did a good job of pushing the ball in the first half."

Coach Alford also had some good things to say about his team's performance. "It was an exciting game. The players and coaches really appreciate the crowd, that was the loudest Carver has been in a while," Alford stated. "There is no reason to hang our heads, we played a hard game. A made free throw here or a rebound there and we win this game."

Iowa, which suffered its third straight Big Ten loss, will now take to the road for both games next week, as they head to Happy Valley to take on the Penn State Nitty Lions on Wednesday night. The Hawkeyes will then travel to Michigan to take on the Wolverines, who have to be considered the surprise of the conference so far this season.

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