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Hawkeyes stun 13th-ranked Michigan

Posted on 14. Jan, 2012 by in Iowa Basketball

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By Brendan Stiles

HawkeyeDrive.com

IOWA CITY, Iowa — After enduring two embarrassing losses back-to-back to two of the Big Ten’s best teams, the Iowa Hawkeyes bounced back in a big way on Saturday.

With perhaps its best effort of the entire season, Iowa found a way to secure a 75-59 upset of No. 13 Michigan at Carver-Hawkeye Arena. The Hawkeyes are now back at .500 in conference play with a 3-3 mark and matched their win total from last season by improving to 11-8 overall.

“I thought our focus and concentration in practice was fabulous,” Iowa head coach Fran McCaffery said. “I knew we were going to get great effort today, but again, it’s the attention to detail.”

Iowa jumped out to an early 6-0 lead with sophomore forward Zach McCabe scoring all six points. Despite speculation of both him and junior forward Eric May taken out of the starting lineup, both started and McCabe finished with 11 points and seven rebounds on the afternoon.

“I thought it got our team a little bit into it,” McCabe said about his six quick points. “I just wanted to help my team in any way I can, scoring or whatever.”

The Wolverines eventually came back and took a 13-12 lead following a 3-point play from Tim Hardaway, Jr. After sophomore guard Devyn Marble tied the game with a free-throw, freshman guard Josh Oglesby shot his way out of a slump and scored seven straight points for Iowa to put it back ahead.

“It’s a whole different level and I’m still trying to get used to it, but practice has been helpful each day,” Oglesby said. “Coach [Kirk] Speraw made me shoot some extra shots, and that really helped. But I think it’s just my confidence.”

Michigan would trim its deficit down to 28-23 entering the final minute of the first half and looked to be going into halftime with all the momentum. But an offensive rebound from senior forward Devon Archie led to a 3-pointer from senior guard Matt Gatens, then Marble hit a jumper as time expired, giving the Hawkeyes a 33-23 lead as they headed back to the locker room.

That momentum carried over for Iowa, who extended the lead to as many as 14 points during the early part of the second half.

“You want to extend your lead, and that’s what we talked about in the last media timeout — to extend the lead,” Marble said. “Going into the start of the second half, we had to come out with the same intensity we had at the beginning of the first half.”

Michigan eventually made it a 12-point game when Iowa called a timeout at the 5:22 mark of the second half. However, the Hawkeyes got an offensive rebound from McCabe that led to another Gatens 3 putting Iowa back up by 15 and keeping the game out of reach for good. Gatens finished tied for a game-high 19 points while also holding Hardaway to nine points on 3-of-12 shooting.

“That might have been the play of the game,” Gatens said. “That was a winning play. He dove on it, saved it, and it got to us. Those are the possessions you’ve got to have and plays you’ve got to have.”

With one-third of their Big Ten season complete, the Hawkeyes will head to Mackey Arena in West Lafayette, Ind., seeking payback against a Purdue team that won at Carver-Hawkeye Arena 79-76 back on Dec. 28. The game is scheduled for 7 p.m. Central on Jan. 17 and will be televised nationally on the Big Ten Network. Iowa then has a nine-day layoff following its contest with the Boilermakers.

“I think it’s a game we should come out knowing we can win,” Marble said. “I felt like we played absolutely horrible, and we lost by three. I think that’s a really positive sign. We played no defense, and that’s a really good team. To only lose by three, it just shows you how much better that we have become just over one year.”

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