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Editor’s note: This is 32nd in a series counting down the Top 50 moments in Iowa Hawkeyes women’s athletics history in the 50 days leading up to the 50th anniversary of Title IX in June.
Carver-Hawkeye Arena was so loud during the 2019 NCAA women’s basketball tournament that Tania Davis sometimes “couldn’t hear myself think.”
“I couldn’t hear play calls,” the guard said after the second game. “I couldn’t hear anything.”
The boisterous crowds on hand to watch Iowa women’s basketball were record-breaking ones.
The combined two-day attendance of 23,096 broke the record for the first two rounds of the NCAA women’s basketball tournament.
The Carver-Hawkeye crowd saw No. 2-seeded Iowa outlast Mercer and Missouri on its way to the Sweet 16.
“If you measured the level of excitement inside Carver-Hawkeye Arena, it would be a 10 on the Richter scale,” ESPN commentator John Brickley said at the beginning of the second-round broadcast.
South Carolina had the previous record with 21,129 fans in 2015.
The record-breaking weekend doubled as the swan song for Naismith Player of the Year Megan Gustafson and fellow seniors Davis and Hannah Stewart.
While they went on to play in the Sweet 16 and Elite Eight, it was their final two games at Carver-Hawkeye Arena.
“It’s definitely bittersweet,” Gustafson said at the time. “Carver has been so good to me.”
Gustafson, Davis and Stewart all kissed the Tigerhawk logo on the Carver-Hawkeye floor after earning the spot in the Sweet 16.
“It was an awesome way to finish off four years here,” Stewart said after the game.
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