IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) -- An emphasis in practice on being strong
foul shooters paid off for Iowa Saturday as the Hawkeyes went
11-of-12 down the stretch to beat Minnesota 60-49.
Coach Steve Alford said he and his players have set their sites
high this season when it comes to free throws.
"We have a lofty goal of shooting 80 percent," Alford said
after his team finished at 81.5 percent from the line. "That bodes
well for us if we can have leads late in the game."
Both teams were cold in the first half, which ended with Iowa
leading just 22-16, but they finally began to find the basket after
Adam Haluska, who led all scorers with 22 points, scored 10 of
Iowa's first 15 points in the second half, including a 3-pointer
and baskets on two drives from the top of the key.
His scoring burst then ended when he missed two 3-point shots, a
lay-in and several other shots, failing to score again until less
than a minute left to play when he made three of four free-throws.
Haluska attributed his drop in point production to the Minnesota
defense and the need for Iowa to find another consistent scoring
"The focus was on me for a while," the senior said. "When
they start focusing on Tyler (Smith) and me, because we score most
of the points, it really opens things up for a lot of the other
The freshman Smith had 15 points, but no other Iowa player
scored in double digits. Sophomore Tony Freeman and senior Mike
Henderson contributed 7 apiece.
Iowa led by 10 points twice in the second half, but each time
the Gophers bounced back.
Lawrence McKenzie then hit a 3-pointer to bring the Gophers
within five. But Minnesota (7-10, 1-2) would get no closer.
Iowa regained a nine-point lead when Freeman hit two foul shots
with 4:13 remaining. Iowa went on to sink 11-of-12 from the line to
seal the win.
Coleman led the Gophers with 19 points, including 15 in the
second half, but the junior scored only once down the stretch after
getting the basket on the goal tending call. McKenzie, also a
junior, finished with 17 for Minnesota.
Coach Jim Molinari said the Gophers were hampered by the loss of
their 6-9 junior center, Spencer Tollackson, who will miss at least
three weeks after breaking his left hand in a loss to No. 3
Wisconsin last week.
"If you're going to have a chance to win here, you have to get
to the basket," Molinari said. "We did get inside, but we had a
hard time finishing."