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The Box Score: Iowa looks good so far

BY RYAN RODRIGUEZ | DECEMBER 02, 2014 5:00 AM

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Two weeks into the 2014 season, the Iowa women’s basketball team has left fans with much to discuss.

The Black and Gold have a 6-1 overall record so far in nonconference play, and while the start of Big Ten play is still slightly more than three weeks away, the Black and Gold have begun to take shape and form their identity as a team with high expectations come March. 

A closer look into the numbers reveals just how well the Hawks have lived up to expectations so far.

Scoring Average — 85.4 points per game (Second in Big Ten)

Iowa head coach Lisa Bluder and her team appear to have picked up right where they left off last season. 

The veteran Hawkeyes have traditionally favored a fast-paced transition game with a high offensive output to win games, and it looks like 2014-15 will see the Hawks sticking to that M.O.

Averaging just over 85 points a game, the Black and Gold are second to just high-flying Indiana in scoring average per game.

“This is kind of a low, slow-down game,” Bluder said after Iowa’s victory over Northern Iowa. “We don’t really like to play that way, but that was UNI’s plan coming in.”

Of course, it doesn’t hurt to have an all-conference point guard as your leader and team captain.
Senior Sam Logic has averaged close to 31 minutes a night for the Hawkeyes, and for good reason.

The Racine, Wisconsin, native has been a set-up machine, averaging close to 7 assists a game.

Sophomore Ally Disterhoft has had a strong campaign as well; she leads the team offensively, averaging close to 16 points a game.

Rebounding defense: 40.3 per game (10th in Big Ten)

While their rank is actually lower than the clip they finished at last year (seventh), the Hawkeyes are averaging just under 3 more defensive rebounds more per game than last season’s 37.7 average.

A team that was famously underwhelming on the boards in 2013-14 has taken steps, albeit little ones, to improve the defense and play a more well-rounded game this season.

And while that number will still need to improve before conference play starts up, it’s a step in the right direction. 

Logic has paced the Hawks so far, averaging 6.9 boards through seven games this year; senior center Beth Doolittle is right behind her with 6.7 per game.

Depth, depth, depth

Finally, the Hawkeyes are making the most out of the talented and deep group of bench players at their disposal.

The Hawks have eight players averaging double-digit minutes every night, and with freshman Christina Buttenham just a shade under at 9.3, the Iowa bench is perhaps the deepest in the conference

Freshman Whitney Jennings has added another dynamic scoring touch to the Iowa offense.

Shooting almost 48 percent from beyond the arc, Jennings leads the team in 3-point percentage, while fellow freshman Carly Mohns and Chase Coley have added a level of grit and tenacity down low for Bluder’s squad.

“I just think she’s incredibly levelheaded for a freshman,” Bluder said about Jennings.  “She was really court savvy out there, real confident with the ball. She takes care of the ball extremely well. She doesn’t have turnovers.”

The starting five have differed almost every game so far this year; however, when a team has depth like Iowa, it’s a good problem to have.

Follow @ryanarod on Twitter for news, updates, and analysis about the Iowa women’s basketball team.


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