Lackluster defense costs Iowa a victory

Iowa is kind of sliding at this point in the season.

Back-to-back losses against Wisconsin (at home) and at Minnesota tonight.  Iowa had apparently forgotten that defense is a part of the game for the better part of the 40 minutes contest.

The Gophers scored a season high 95 points in a game that they needed to have because they were a bubble team coming into this game.  They are likely in the tournament now with this big win against Iowa.

The Gophers were lights out in the first half and went on an incredible 27-9 run over about a 7 minute span.  Iowa was able to close out the half on a 6-0 and keep the lead to a reasonable 4 points instead of the 10 point deficit they faced with a minute left in the half.

Minnesota shot an outstanding 70% from the field and 82% from behind the arc in the first twenty minutes.  This was a half that was likely Iowa’s worst defensive half of the entire year.  Heck, the second half probably ranked up there too.

The Gophers did not slow down out of the half, but Iowa somehow managed to stick around in this game.  Thanks in large part to Devyn Marble and Aaron White who both had 20+ point games for the 2oth ranked Hawkeyes.

They started to fire up the defensive pressure late in the first half, they held Minnesota without a field goal in the final 8 minutes of the game.  But the lack of defense in the first 32 minutes had already killed the Hawkeyes as they couldn’t dig themselves out of the hole they were in.

Iowa is now in a dangerous place in my mind.  They are rapidly approaching the bubble if things continue on the path they are headed.  They have a game on Thursday against Indiana that is very losable and then still have to visit East Lansing before the year ends.  If Iowa finishes 21-10, they are likely close to the bubble.  Now, I think they still get in to the tournament, but right now they could be out in the first round.

The game against Indiana will be on Thursday and will tip off at 8:00 p.m. CT.

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