IOWA CITY, Ia. — Sometime in the coming days, the Iowa athletic department will send a $105,000 check to Stetson University. It should come with a thank-you note as well.
The Hawkeye men's basketball team, looking to break out of a four-game funk, found the perfect foil in an undersized and timid Hatters squad Monday, pummeling the guests in a 95-68 victory at Carver-Hawkeye Arena.
Iowa took control at the outset and never trailed. Stetson (4-6) quickly resorted to fouling the Hawkeyes and never mounted a serious threat.
Cordell Pemsl and Isaiah Moss each scored a career-high 21 points to lead Iowa.
Sophomore forward Ahmad Wagner got his first start for Iowa, in place of Nicholas Baer, and quickly showed why. He scored five consecutive points off of aggressive post moves as the Hawkeyes ran to a 9-0 lead in the first 3 minutes. Wagner finished with eight points and six rebounds, but his night ended early after he fell awkwardly in the lane and limped off the court with an apparent knee injury early in the second half. He later returned to the bench, however, and was smiling and laughing with his teammates.
Iowa (4-5) stretched the lead to 35-14 with 4:42 left in the half, despite poor shooting in the initial stages from starting guards Jordan Bohannon and Peter Jok. Those two combined to go 0-for-10 from the floor in the first half. And it didn't matter.
Pemsl scored 15 first-half points, making 6-of-7 shots. Moss added 13, including 3-of-5 from 3-point range. The Hawkeyes had a 22-6 edge in points in the paint and attempted 22 free throws to Stetson's four.
Jok got going in the second half, and finished with 15 points, eight rebounds and a career-high seven assists.
Coming off a 98-89 loss against Nebraska-Omaha here just two days ago, it was the perfect bounce back for the Hawkeyes.
Iowa next hosts Iowa State at 7 p.m. Thursday.