Knowing he had a veteran roster with place versatility, Fran McCaffery mentioned earlier than his thirteenth season at Iowa that he had put collectively “probably the most troublesome schedule that I’ve ever put in entrance of our staff. So clearly I really feel like they’ll deal with it. I’m excited for the problem.”
The first large check on the 2022-23 calendar occurred Wednesday night time towards Seton Hall, a feisty program that repeatedly reaches the NCAA Tournament.
The Hawkeyes handed with flying colours, staving off each Seton Hall cost and pulling away to prevail, 83-67, on the Prudential Center in Newark, New Jersey.
On an evening when the offense wasn’t there for a very long time, Iowa’s protection was − not less than early. You cannot at all times say that about Iowa groups, however three video games in this group has proven in stretches that it may well play with tenacity on the defensive finish of the ground.
Seton Hall grabbed six of a doable seven offensive rebounds to start out the sport and took a 10-2 lead. After the primary media timeout, although, Iowa turned issues round. Seton Hall scored three factors over a stretch of greater than 10 minutes. In the primary half alone, the Hawkeyes compelled 11 turnovers and held the Pirates to twenty% taking pictures (6-for-30). An eight-point deficit grew right into a 34-22 halftime lead.
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The incontrovertible fact that Iowa had a 12-point halftime lead after taking pictures simply 33.3% from the ground (11-for-33) was a testomony to the wonderful protection.
And then on offense, there was Kris Murray.
The 6-foot-8 junior scored 14 of Iowa’s first 18 factors to assist carry his staff early. Murray displayed a full arsenal of scoring, whether or not he was working the ground, posting up in the half-court offense or draining 3-pointers.
Every time Iowa wanted a bucket, it leaned on Murray. After back-to-back 3-pointers from Seton Hall in the second half minimize Iowa’s result in 46-41, Murray calmly posted up and scored a leaner to calm issues down.
“He is the reply man!” Fox’s Tim Brando mentioned after Murray swished a 3-pointer to increase Iowa’s result in 53-45. “All night time lengthy.”
Murray would end with 29 factors, tying his profession excessive, and 11 rebounds in 37 minutes.
Tony Perkins and Filip Rebraca have been highway warriors as nicely for the Hawkeyes.
Perkins bounced again from a late-first half technical foul with second-half aggression. Perkins took the ball to the rim when Iowa wanted buckets and was rewarded with layups and foul calls. The level guard completed with 18 factors, 5 assists and three steals.
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Rebraca’s in-the-paint efficiency was vital. He did the soiled work in posting his second double-double of the younger season: 10 factors, 11 rebounds together with 4 blocked pictures.
Iowa’s free-throw taking pictures down the stretch helped put this end result away. The Hawkeyes canned 19 of 21 free throws in the second half and 28-for-33 (84.8%) for the sport.
Iowa improved to 3-0 whereas handing Seton Hall (2-1) its first lack of the season. The Hawkeyes host Omaha at 7 pm Monday earlier than touring to Niceville, Florida, to play in the Emerald Coast Classic, the place they are going to face Clemson earlier than most likely matching up with No. 18 TCU.
Hawkeyes columnist Chad Leistikow has coated sports activities for 28 years with The Des Moines Register, USA TODAY and Iowa City Press-Citizen. Follow @ChadLeistikow on Twitter.