Point guard Jordan Bohannon discusses what went wrong on Iowa’s final possession Mark Emmert/Hawk Central
IOWA CITY, Ia. — Iowa's two best players each had a chance to be the hero Saturday.
But Jordan Bohannon's contested 3-pointer was off-target and Tyler Cook's hurried putback attempt bounced off the backboard as time expired, allowing Indiana to leave Carver-Hawkeye Arena with an 84-82 victory.
"I felt like I got a pretty good shot off for the time I had left, and it felt good coming off my hand. But it wasn't one of my nights tonight," Bohannon said.
"I've made those shots hundreds of thousands of times in practice."
Iowa was playing just its second game all season that came down to the final possession. Nicholas Baer called timeout with 9.1 seconds left, and coach Fran McCaffery drew up a play that had Cook as the first option in the post.
Guard Maishe Dailey saw that Cook was double-teamed, so he dribbled in and found Bohannon on the left wing with 4 seconds to go.
"We're comfortable with any shot that he takes on the floor," Dailey said of Bohannon.
Indiana coach Archie Miller said, from his vantage point 50 feet away, he thought Bohannon's shot was going in.
"We're lucky to come out of here with a win," Miller said.
Cook snared his fifth offensive rebound of the game off Bohannon's miss along the right baseline and quickly tried for a tying basket with more than a second left. His shot was well off the mark.
Hawkeyes forward Tyler Cook blames himself for rushing his final shot attempt Mark Emmert/Hawk Central
"I didn't know how much time I had left on the clock, which is solely on me," Cook said. "I wish I would have known. I would have got us a much better shot."
It was a season-high fifth consecutive loss for Iowa (12-17, 3-13 Big Ten Conference).
It came before a loud crowd announced at 15,229 that was the largest of the season.
The Hawkeyes took those fans on a roller-coaster ride.
Iowa led by 13, then trailed by 13, only to come up just short of its 13th win.
Indiana's Robert Johnson scored a carer-high 29 points, making nine of his 12 3-point attempts, to spur the rally.
His previous best mark for 3-pointers in a game was six.
"I've been waiting for him to step up and have one of these nights," Miller said.
The Hawkeyes made it easy for Johnson by continually losing track of him, much to McCaffery's consternation. He eventually switched out of his zone defense for that reason.
"We just weren't as active in the zone as we needed to be. Our closeouts were not effective enough. It was pretty obvious who was hitting shots. It was two guys (Indiana's Devonte Greene went 4-for-5 from the arc)," McCaffery said.
"You're going to close out differently to them than you are anybody else. And for some reason, we did not ever figure out ... when Robert Johnson's on fire, you can't stop short. You just can't. And we just kept doing it. And it was extremely frustrating."
Cook had 28 points and 10 rebounds. Bohannon had 10 points, all in the final nine minutes, as the Hawkeyes took their turn to rally. But he was just 2-for-10 from 3-point range. Freshman center Luka Garza added 17 points.
Iowa shot 55.1 percent from the field, but, in an all-too-familiar refrain, allowed Indiana to top that rate. The Hoosiers, in winning a fourth consecutive game, made 56.1 percent of their shots.
The Hawkeyes made their first 10 shots and built a 23-10 lead.
But Indiana (16-12, 9-7) patiently got back into the game, taking advantage of 11 first-half Iowa turnovers to close within 45-42 at intermission.
"We got a lead. We got content to trade (baskets)," McCaffery said. "We didn't extend it. And of course, they're going to keep shooting the ball, they're going to keep moving the ball."
Iowa fell behind 72-59, then worked its way back into an 82-all tie with 1:50 left on a pair of Cook free throws.
Indiana's Freddie McSwain Jr. knifed into the lane for the final basket of the game with 49 seconds left.
After Cook couldn't convert a layup, Iowa fouled Johnson. The senior missed his one-and-one free throw, however, giving the Hawkeyes their last chance. It was the only mistake Johnson made, and Iowa couldn't make him pay.
"We did what we wanted to. We got a shot off before time expired and five guys went to the glass like they were supposed to," Bohannon said.
"We got a second look, so I think we were pretty prepared for a late-game situation. We just didn't have my shot to fall or Tyler's shot to fall. So it was pretty disappointing."
Iowa next plays at Minnesota on Wednesday in its final road game of the season.