Hawkeyes fall in overtime against TCU in NIT; coach sees bright future

Hawkeyes fall in overtime against TCU in NIT; coach sees bright future
The Associated Press

IOWA CITY (AP) — This season was always going to be a rebuilding year for the Hawkeyes, who nearly made the NCAA tournament despite a 3-5 start.

Now that it’s over, Iowa can start pushing toward a potentially long run as an NCAA tournament program. And all that was little consolation Sunday.

Alex Robinson and Vladimir Brodziansky scored 19 points apiece and TCU survived 94-92 in overtime against No. 1 seeded Iowa to advance to the NIT quarterfinals.

TCU was playing without starting guard Jaylen Fisher, who broke his wrist and is out for the season.

The Horned Frogs (21-15) led 84-82 in the final seconds when Iowa’s Tyler Cook finished a layup to tie it and send the game to overtime.

TCU never trailed in the extra period, and a Kenrich Williams dunk with 3:02 left gave the Horned Frogs an 88-86 lead they held the rest of the way. TCU was up six with 24 seconds left, then a Jordan Bohannon 3 for Iowa trimmed the lead to 94-92. But the Hawkeyes ran out of time.

The Horned Frogs will host Richmond on Tuesday for a spot in the NIT semifinals as Jamie Dixon’s turnaround in Fort Worth continues. TCU had a strong nonconference showing, a win over Kansas in the Big 12 tournament and now a victory at Iowa.

Bohannon had a career-high 25 points for the Hawkeyes (19-15) and hit seven 3-pointers. Bohannon erased any doubts about whether he’d be an impact player in the Big Ten, finishing with 10.9 points and just over five assists per game.

“You’re seeing a guy who’s just enjoying that freedom and the benefit of his experience I think at this point,” Iowa coach Fran McCaffery said.

Fellow freshman Tyler Cook was second on the team with 12.3 points and third with 5.3 rebounds a game while league sixth man of the year Nicholas Baer provided a spark off the bench.

Though Iowa missed the NCAA tournament for the first time in four years, it has depth coming back. The Hawkeyes also have a pair of promising big men in Cordell Pemsl and Ryan Kriener — both freshmen in 2016-17 — and two highly-touted post players coming in as recruits.

Iowa could be a Big Ten title contender as soon as next season, though it has to replace Peter Jok. The senior added 22 points in his final game for the Hawkeyes.

Jok will go down as one of the best pure shooters in school history — and Iowa is going to miss him. The Hawkeyes will also need to improve defensively, though young teams typically take a bit longer to develop on that end of the floor.

“They kept grinding and kept trying to get better, so I think ultimately that would be my expectation, that … we’re going to keep grinding and we’re going to keep concentrating on the game plan, stay true to the game plan, and be a great teammate that helps the guy next to him,” McCaffery said.

The win is TCU’s first ever against Iowa and the first meeting between the schools since 1948.

TCU (21-15) …………. 44 40 10—94

At Iowa (19-15) …….. 40 44 8—92

TCU: Miller 3-8 0-0 7, Brodziansky 9-12 1-1 19, Bane 3-9 6-7 13, Robinson 7-16 4-4 19, K.Williams 6-11 1-2 15, Washburn 2-4 0-2 4, Shepherd 0-0 0-0 0, B.Parrish 5-7 0-2 14, M.Williams 1-4 0-0 3. Totals 36-71 12-18 94.

I: Cook 7-7 2-5 16, Wagner 2-4 2-6 6, Bohannon 8-15 2-3 25, Jok 8-17 1-2 22, Moss 0-1 0-0 0, Baer 5-8 1-2 15, Pemsl 2-5 0-0 4, Kriener 1-2 0-1 2, Uhl 1-1 0-0 2, C.Williams 0-1 0-0 0, Ellingson 0-1 0-0 0. Totals 34-62 8-19 92.

3-point goals: TCU 10-24 (B.Parrish 4-6, K.Williams 2-5, Bane 1-3, Robinson 1-3, M.Williams 1-3, Miller 1-4), I 16-30 (Bohannon 7-12, Jok 5-10, Baer 4-6, Moss 0-1, Ellingson 0-1). Fouled out: None. Rebounds: TCU 29 (K.Williams 10), I 37 (Baer 10). Assists: TCU 26 (Robinson 11), I 26 (Bohannon 13). Total fouls: TCU 21, I 21. Technicals: K.Williams, Pemsl.

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