Iowa Women's Basketball

Iowa women's basketball grinds out a win over No. 17 Maryland

Alexis Sevillian's late heroics help Hawkeyes prevail 66-61 despite a major rebounding disadvantage

IOWA CITY — The boxscore and the result, they just didn’t match up.

The Iowa Hawkeyes gave up 38 offensive rebounds. Their assist-to-turnover rate, normally shiny, was lackluster. Monika Czinano fouled out with more than 6 minutes left.

And yet ...

Alexis Sevillian hit a tie-breaking 3-pointer with 3:09 left, then added another basket shortly thereafter as Iowa beat 17th-ranked Maryland 66-61 in a Big Ten women’s basketball game before a crowd of 6,689 Thursday night at Carver-Hawkeye Arena.

“I’m proud of our resilience,” Iowa Coach Lisa Bluder said. “It’s a good thing this wasn’t gymnastics, because the style points weren’t there.”

But the Hawkeyes (12-3 overall, 3-1 Big Ten), who usually play a graceful brand of basketball, proved they can win a slugfest too.

“It felt like football out there,” Sevillian said.

Added Kathleen Doyle: “The Big Ten is physical basketball. That’s what I signed up for.”

The Hawkeyes have beaten Maryland three straight times (including last year’s Big Ten tournament championship game), and their 29-game home winning streak is the second-longest active string in the nation, behind Baylor (48).

“Iowa was sensational. They punched first and competed for 40 minutes,” said Maryland Coach Brenda Frese, a Cedar Rapids native.

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Sevillian’s 3-pointer with 6:15 left in the second quarter gave the Hawkeyes their largest lead, 38-24. But the hot start didn’t last, and Maryland (11-4, 2-2) rallied.

The Terrapins held Iowa to 1-for-16 shooting late in the second period and early in the third, and claimed a 44-41 advantage on Kaila Charles’ putback with 3:45 left in the third.

Iowa regained the lead, 49-47, heading into the fourth quarter, then it was tied at 52-52 and 54-54.

Sevillian, who entered the game hitting 33.8 percent from the floor this season, stepped up and knocked down the shot of the game, a trey from the left wing.

“I’d been struggling with my confidence going into today,” Sevillian said. “The coaches talked to me, and I had no doubts in myself today.”

After Sevillian’s shot, Meyer grabbed her and said, “Yes, sir!”

Sevillian’s next basket came when she pump-faked a 3-pointer, stepped in and hit a 16-footer to make it 59-54. Maryland got within three points twice, but the Hawkeyes made 7 of 8 free throws in the final 49 seconds. Sevillian’s two foul shots closed the door.

The Hawkeyes won despite finishing on the short end of a 58-35 rebounding margin. The Terrapins got four, five or six shots on the offensive end numerous times.

“Believe me, it wasn’t for a lack of trying,” Bluder said.

Sometimes, Maryland eventually converted. Sometimes, it didn’t. The Terrapins shot 26 of 84 from the floor, 4 of 25 from long distance, 5 of 13 from the free-throw line. Maryland scored 25 second-chance points and could have had twice that many.

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Iowa won despite 23 turnovers, against 13 assists. And it prevailed despite Czinano — the nation’s most accurate shooter at 71 percent — playing only 15 minutes due to fouls.

That left Amanda Ollinger as the primary post defender, and she delivered with nine rebounds and eight blocks.

Doyle led Iowa with 21 points. Meyer scored 20, Sevillian 15. Charles paced Maryland with 23 points and 18 boards.

The Hawkeyes host No. 12 Indiana (14-2, 4-0) at 4 p.m. Sunday. Win, and they begin next week tied for first place.

IOWA 66, MARYLAND 61

At Iowa City

MARYLAND (61): Shakira Austin 5-13 1-5 11, Stephanie Jones 4-7 0-0 8, Kaila Charles 10-22 2-4 23, Taylor Mikesell 2-14 0-0 5, Blair Watson 3-15 0-0 8, Ashley Owusu 1-7 2-4 4, Faith Masonius 0-1 0-0 0, Diamond Miller 1-5 0-0 2, Sara Vujacic 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 26-84 5-13 61.

IOWA (66): Amanda Ollinger 0-2 3-4 3, Monika Czinano 2-3 0-0 4, Makenzie Meyer 5-12 7-8 20, Alexis Sevillian 5-9 2-2 15, Kathleen Doyle 7-15 5-6 21, McKenna Warnock 1-7 0-0 2, Gabbie Marshall 0-2 1-2 1, Tomi Waiso 0-0 0-0 0, Kate Martin 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 20-50 18-22 66.

Halftime: Iowa 39, Maryland 30. 3-point goals: Maryland 4-25 (Charles 1-1, Mikesell 1-9, Watson 2-12, Owusu 0-1, Miller 0-2), Iowa 8-22 (Meyer 3-8, Sevillian 3-5, Doyle 2-5, Warnock 0-2, Marshall 0-2). Team fouls: Maryland 21, Iowa 13. Fouled out: Austin, Czinano. Rebounds: Maryland 59 (Charles 18), Iowa 35 (Ollinger, Warnock 9). Assists: Maryland 12 (Austin 4), Iowa 13 (Meyer 6). Steals: Maryland 18 (Watson 9), Iowa 8 (Ollinger 4). Turnovers: Maryland 22, Iowa 23.

Attendance: 6,689.

 

Comments: (319) 368-8857; jeff.linder@thegazette.com

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