IOWA CITY, Ia. — There was a moment in the closing seconds of the third quarter Thursday night — after Ally Disterhoft had tied Iowa's all-time scoring record with 2,059 points — when the senior guard walked over to head coach Lisa Bluder near the bench.
"I said, 'Do you want to get (the record) tonight or do you want to get it on Saturday?" Bluder remembered postgame. "And she said, 'Tonight.' And I said, 'OK.'"
Disterhoft kept her word.
But it wasn't without drama. Early in the fourth she drove past her defender at the top of the key and touched a shot off the board for the record-breaking bucket ... only for it to hang on the edge of the rim and fall off. About a minute later she juked past a defender in a 2-on-1 fastbreak ... and again her layup clung to the rim and dropped harmlessly to the floor.
"I biffed it a few times, too," Disterhoft laughed. "And I knew it because I would miss and the crowd would go 'Oh!' and I’d be like, 'Sorry guys. I’ll get the next one, I promise.'"
Yep. She got the next one.
Just past the halfway point of the final frame, Disterhoft drove baseline, squeezed through two defenders and kissed a bucket off the glass as a foul knocked her to the court. Teammates rushed over to help her up and celebrate with the new scoring champ. She finished Iowa's 95-74 win over Missouri State with 21 points and 2,061 for her career, passing Cindy Haugejorde's all-time record of 2,059 that'd held since 1980.
"I’m so appreciative and grateful for all of the opportunities I’ve been given along the way," Disterhoft said. "Obviously hard work has gone into it, but a lot of kids work hard and they don’t get these opportunities given to them. The coaches have believed in me since I was a freshman. They have set me up to succeed out on the floor, as well as off the floor. My teammates have done the same."
The proverbial monkey's off her back now, too.
"Hailey Schneden came up to me before the game when we were shooting around she said, 'Ally, just don’t put too much pressure on yourself,'" Disterhoft said. "And I think I just needed to hear that from her.
"It’s always kind of been in the back of my mind that this was possible. And just because it’s been a conversation outside of Carver, it has been weighing a little bit on me I think subconsciously."
Disterhoft's story is an incredible one. She's a pure-blood, Iowa City-raised Hawkeye fan. She grew up dreaming to play for Iowa and was actually the subject of a "Dream Big" promotional poster for Iowa women's basketball when she was in fourth grade.
"I think it shows that I can identify talent at 8 years old," Bluder joked.
You get a record, and you get a record ...
Megan Gustafson also made history. She grabbed 10 rebounds to push her season total to 307 — the most any Iowa player has recorded in a single season. Amy Herrig hauled in 306 rebounds in 1999.
"I love rebounding and that’s something I was meant to do here," Gustafson said. "I kind of think of it as whenever I get a rebound, it’s not my rebound. It’s Iowa’s rebound."
Gustafson also netted 14 points, so she's at 916 for her career. If the sophomore forward from Port Wing, Wis., keeps scoring at the rate she is now, she could very well pass Disterhoft by the end of her senior year.
"That's the goal," Bluder said.
Hang on, one more record: Iowa shot 62.3 percent (38-for-61), which is the best a team has ever shot in a WNIT game.
Matthew Bain covers preps, recruiting and the Hawkeyes for the Iowa City Press-Citizen, Des Moines Register and HawkCentral. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org and follow him on Twitter @MatthewBain_.
Iowa (18-13, 8-8 Big Ten) vs. South Dakota (23-8, 11-5 Summit)
When/where: 3 p.m., Carver-Hawkeye Arena
TV: Big Ten Network Plus
About South Dakota: The Coyotes are the defending WNIT champions. They beat North Dakota 78-55 in the first round; Iowa beat North Dakota 75-60 in November. Four players average double figures, but Allison Arens leads with 16.9 points on 49 percent shooting. As a team, they shoot 38 percent on 3-pointers and Jaycee Bradley (12.8 ppg) shoots 44 percent from long range.