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Iowa men’s basketball team suffers first loss, 79-66 to TCU
Hawkeyes got out-rebounded, outshot, and never led in Emerald Coast Classic final
(This story was written from Cedar Rapids.)
Iowa’s time in Associated Press’ men’s basketball Top 25 will be a short one.
After one week in the rankings, the No. 25 Hawkeyes probably will be replaced by the TCU team it lost to Saturday night in the Emerald Coast Classic championship in Niceville, Fla., 79-66.
The 5-1 Horned Frogs were more physical than Iowa and took far better shots. They scored 58 points in the paint and shot 54.8 percent from the field to the Hawkeyes’ 42.6 percent. Iowa was 3-of-17 from 3-point distance and was 7-of-36 from deep over two games.
“I don’t think we handled the physicality very well,” Iowa Coach Fran McCaffery said in his Hawkeye Radio Network postgame interview.
“They hurt us a little bit with their size and their physicality and their girth.”
The game got away from the 5-1 Hawkeyes after halftime. The Frogs led 45-41 with 16:36 left, then went on a 13-2 run and were ahead by double-digits the rest of the way.
Tony Perkins and Ahron Ulis had 15 points for Iowa. It was a career-high for Ulis, who was 7-of-8 from the floor.
Kris Murray had 11 points, and was 4-of-14 from the field.
“They’re being real physical with him,” McCaffery said. “He didn’t get off to a great start.
Murray was 8-of-31 from the field in the two games here. Iowa forward Patrick McCaffery scored 21 points in a 74-71 win over Clemson here Friday, but was scoreless in 16 minutes.
Micah Peavy had a game-high 16 points for TCU, which led by as much as 23 points late in the game. Guard Mike Miles, the preseason Big 12 Player of the Year, added 15 points.
TCU had a 41-28 rebounding edge. Both teams had 15 turnovers.
Iowa never led. TCU zipped to a 9-0 lead in the first 2:28 and McCaffery called a timeout. He subbed in guards Connor McCaffery, Ahron Ulis and Dasonte Bowen, and the trio helped the Hawkeyes to an 11-2 run to tie the game at 11.
There were three more ties in the half. TCU took a 36-29 lead, but Iowa finished the half with a 5-0 run to cut its deficit to two points.
Iowa had nine turnovers in the half and finished with 15. Iowa entered the game fourth in the nation in fewest turnovers per game with 8.2.
The Hawkeyes’ next game is Tuesday at 8 p.m. in Iowa City against Georgia Tech (4-2) in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge.
“We’ll learn from this, we’ll grow from this,” Fran McCaffery said. “We’ll be better.”