Hawkeyes’ offensive woes continue in Purdue loss


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For the first eight minutes of Iowa’s game at No. 6 Purdue on Feb. 13, the Hawkeyes looked as though they could stay within distance of the Boilermakers. Down 16-12, it seemed as though they might to catch Purdue off guard.

But then, the game spiraled out of control.

In the final 11:45 of the first half, Iowa mustered just three points, a 3-pointer by freshman Cully Payne. The team’s offense appeared completely out of sync.

The Boilermakers ended the first half on an 18-3 run to go ahead 34-15 at halftime and eventually put up a 63-40 victory. The loss left Iowa (9-17, 3-10) befuddled.

“When you can’t make shots, you’ve got a problem,” Iowa head coach Todd Lickliter said during a postgame radio interview. “More than anything, the way the Boilermakers play, where they’re just up in you tight all the time, you’ve got to make plays. … They make you do that.”

Offensively, nothing seemed to go right for the Hawkeyes. Payne led Iowa with 11 points and six assists, but he also committed seven of the team’s 15 turnovers.

The Hawkeyes received solid production from junior Jarryd Cole, who posted 10 points. However, he fouled out of the contest with 13:16 remaining.

His absence killed any momentum Iowa picked up at the start of the second half.

The 40 points were the fewest the Hawkeyes have scored in any game since 1949, and they came on a disheartening 14-of-47 shooting.

“We really tried to open the floor, use ball screens, and try to get open shots for guys,” Payne said during a postgame radio interview. “I felt like we got a lot of great shots … We just didn’t knock them down.”

The offense wasn’t the only aspect of Iowa’s game that looked discouraging. Defensively, the Hawkeyes struggled as well — mainly inside.

Purdue’s JaJuan Johnson finished with a double-double, tallying 21 points and 10 rebounds to lead the way for the Boilermakers.

“He had his way,” Lickliter said. “He just turned and made shots, shot jump-shots in, and he got so comfortable. There wasn’t anything we could do with him after that.”

Things won’t get any easier for Iowa on Tuesday, when the Hawkeyes will host a Michigan squad it hasn’t had success against recently.

The Wolverines dominated the Hawkeyes, 60-46, during the teams’ first go-around. Just like against Purdue over the weekend, it was a game in which Iowa had difficulty knocking down shots.

Tip-off inside Carver-Hawkeye Arena on Tuesday is scheduled for 8 p.m. The game will be televised by the Big Ten Network.

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