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Last 2 Iowa women’s basketball wins have been polar opposites
Up next, an emotional rematch with Nebraska
IOWA CITY — The Iowa Hawkeyes have stacked together two straight women’s basketball road victories.
They came in completely different fashion.
Sunday, they nailed 11 of 19 3-point attempts in a 95-86 victory at Nebraska.
Thursday, they relied on their inside game. Monika Czinano did the heavy lifting — 12 of 14 from the field in a 27-point gem — and the Hawkeyes handled Purdue, 79-66, at West Lafayette, Ind.
“It was a gritty win,” Czinano said. “Sometimes, you’ve got to find different ways to win.”
The Hawkeyes prevailed despite an 0-for-15 performance from long range.
“It was a pretty ugly game, except for Monika,” Caitlin Clark said. “But a road win is a road win, and that’s all that matters.”
Iowa (9-4 overall, 3-1 Big Ten) returns home for its second encounter with Nebraska (13-3, 2-3) in an eight-day span. Tipoff is 5 p.m. Sunday at Carver-Hawkeye Arena (Big Ten Network).
“It’s going to be an emotional game,” Iowa Coach Lisa Bluder said. “It got pretty emotional there.”
As you might expect, Clark was the primary lightning rod in a back-and-forth with the Pinnacle Bank Arena crowd.
“It will be good to be back home,” Clark said. “I’ll probably get fewer boos and more yeas.”
Despite the 3-point oh-fer at Purdue (Iowa’s first since 2018), the Hawkeyes still shot a very respectable 49 percent from the field, thanks to hitting 26 of 38 shots from inside the arc.
And they were 27 of 30 from the free-throw line.
Iowa leads the nation in foul shooting, and the margin is widening as the season progresses. The Hawkeyes are hitting 86.1 percent of their freebies; Iowa State is No. 2 at 81.5 percent.
All five of Iowa’s starters are shooting 80-plus from the line, and everybody on the roster is at 72 percent or better.
If last Sunday’s game is any barometer, expect a high-scoring affair. It was 52-46 at halftime, 74-70 after three quarters. But the Huskers cooled late, and the Hawkeyes went home winners.
The Huskers have lost three of four after a 12-0 start. They dropped a 72-65 decision at No. 6 Indiana on Wednesday.
Jaz Shelley leads the Huskers at 13.8 points per game. The 5-foot-9 sophomore is a native of Australia and a transfer from Oregon.