Hawkeye miscues costly in loss to Seton Hall
IOWA CITY, Ia. — Too many missed free throws. Too many turnovers.
The Iowa men’s basketball team needed career-high scoring outputs from two players just to hang with Seton Hall on Thursday, and it ultimately couldn’t overcome its own mistakes and lost 91-83 to Seton Hall at Carver-Hawkeye Arena.
The Hawkeyes (2-1), facing their first true test of the season, got 30 points from senior guard Peter Jok and 24 from freshman forward Tyler Cook in a breakout performance.
But they also missed 13 free throws and committed 17 turnovers. Against a veteran Pirates team, that spelled disaster.
Compounding problems was an Iowa defense that struggled to stop Seton Hall from dribbling into the lane. The Pirates had a 50-24 advantage in points in the paint.
“I would like to have seen us play better defense collectively for the duration, but certainly in the second half,” Iowa coach Fran McCaffery said. “We went to the press, we went to a zone, and we just didn’t perform to the level that’s necessary.”
Seton Hall misfired on some close-range shots in the first half, but loosened up the Hawkeye defense and shot 65.5 percent after intermission.
Iowa was able to stay in the game because of Jok and King’s efforts on the offensive end. Jok made 11-of-21 shots and added a career-high 11 rebounds with four assists. Cook showed what he is capable of, opening the scoring with a surprise 3-pointer before bulling into the lane to make 8-of-12 shots from two-point range.
His only weakness was at the free-throw line, where he converted on just 5-of-12.
“He ran the floor. He really did a good job fronting the post,” McCaffery said of his freshman star. “We went to him and he got to the free-throw line. Unfortunately, he missed seven free throws.But he got there 12 times.”
No other Hawkeye scored more than eight points or attempted more than six shots, however.
Then there were the turnovers, six of them coming from Iowa point guards Christian Williams and Jordan Bohannon.
“The turnovers, they seemed to come in bunches. One time in the first half and one time in the second half I thought they came in bunches. That changes the complexion of the game,” McCaffery said. “Credit them. Their closeouts. The guy looks open on a cut, they close it down quickly. The length and the quickness and the power of this team is unlike what (Bohannon has) seen.”
Seton Hall got 26 points from freshman Myles Powell, 25 from Desi Rodriguez and 20 from Khadeen Carrington to hold off the Hawkeyes.
And it started in the first half, with too many easy jaunts to the basket.
“This is a team that is particularly good at that. They have a number of different guys that go off the dribble and they play small a lot,” McCaffery said. “They didn’t get a lot of post-ups. It’s all drive-and-kick 3s. Turn the corner. We just have to challenge better at the rim.”
Iowa next hosts Texas-Rio Grande Valley at 4:30 p.m. Sunday.