MINNEAPOLIS — Minnesota defeated Iowa 92-87 Sunday afternoon in men’s basketball at Williams Arena.
Defense was a distinct problem for the Hawkeyes as the Gophers built a 55-46 halftime lead primarily from drives to the basket. They had 24 points in the paint in the half.
Iowa shot 60 percent in that half, but fell behind because of the leaky defense and seven turnovers to the Gophers’ three.
With 15:55 left in the second half and his team behind 65-54, Iowa Coach Fran McCaffery pulled his five starters and kept them on the bench until after the 11:50 timeout when Tyler Cook and Isaiah Moss returned. Iowa didn’t make any headway in that stretch.
Minnesota’s biggest lead was 81-65, with 5:50 left. That was followed by 11 straight Hawkeye points, and Iowa pulled within four points twice. But that was as good as it got.
The 21st-ranked Hawkeyes, losers of their last two games, dropped to 5-5 in the Big Ten and 16-5 overall. Minnesota is 5-4 and 15-5.
Luka Garza tied his career-high with 25 points for Iowa. Moss had 23, Cook 18. Cook airballed a free throw on a 1-and-1 with 2:15 left and his team behind 82-78. He was stripped of the ball on a drive when his team was down 84-80.
Minnesota senior forward Jordan Murphy had 23 points, 11 rebounds and six assists.
Iowa’s next game is at home Friday against No. 5 Michigan.