Not even close.
Paced by Jarrod Uthoff, Westport Touchless Autowash/Beat the Bookstore (5-4) crushed The Jill Armstrong Team at Skogman Realty (6-2) 89-77 in the Prime Time League championship game Thursday night in North Liberty.
Uthoff led all scorers with 32 points. The Iowa men’s basketball senior-to-be also pulled down four rebounds and dished out three assists. He was 8-for-8 from the free-throw line. Junior Dom Uhl added 18 points and 14 rebounds. On the other bench, senior Adam Woodbury posted 15 points and 12 rebounds.
“Any time you step onto the court, you want to win,” Woodbury said. “This is going to hurt for a little while. I hate losing, just like in the regular season. When we lost to (Mike Gesell’s) team earlier in the (PTL), I hated losing that game. If you play a team sport and you want to win, you hate every time you lose.”
Uthoff was named the PTL’s Most Valuable Player. He averaged 17.4 points and 7.1 rebounds per game entering Thursday’s action.
No one could contain the Cedar Rapids native Thursday.
“I thought I had a mismatch most of the night,” Uthoff said. “They really didn’t exploit Woody enough. I went up against a smaller guy most of the time.”
Despite the loss of Aaron White and Gabe Olaseni to graduation, Iowa should have a strong frontcourt presence in 2015-16.
Uthoff and Woodbury lead that effort, while Uhl will likely have a larger role for the Hawkeyes under coach Fran McCaffery. Incoming recruits Dale Jones and Ahmad Wagner could also log minutes at the forward spot.
Iowa averaged 69.8 points per game as a team last season.
“We might try to play a little more inside this year,” Woodbury said. “We have guys like Jarrod that can really post up small guys that are going to be guarding him. We have other versatile guys, hopefully myself included.
“Anytime you get the ball and establish low, you can work to kick it out for 3s, and that makes it easier on our shooters to knock down shots and space the floor.”
Reach Matt Cozzi at email@example.com or 319-887-5409, and follow him on Twitter at @matt_cozzi.