Johnson and Logic Lead Hawkeyes in Thriller
Feb. 2, 2012
By ADAM MEIER
Logic posted her best performance of the season, scoring 20 points while grabbing 13 rebounds and dishing out eight assists; all while committing only one turnover. And she did all of that in front of about 100 friends and family from her hometown, Racine, Wis.
"Sam, it's nice to see," said UI head coach Lisa Bluder. "For her to come home and be able to play like that -- I'm really happy for her."
The Hawkeyes needed much more than just a great outing from Logic to knock off the Badgers; it was a total team effort.
Freshman guard Melissa Dixon returned to action for the first time since being injured in the Jan. 2 contest at Ohio State. Dixon jumpstarted the Iowa offense when she returned to the court.
Trailing 25-16 with over nine minutes left in the first half, Dixon and the Hawkeyes went on an 11-0 spurt, which included two 3-pointers from the freshman and was capped by a Kamillie Wahlin long ball that gave Iowa a 27-25 lead with 6:55 until halftime.
However, the Hawkeye defense failed to identify the Wisconsin shooters, and after an 8-0 Badger run, Iowa found itself trailing, 39-31, with 3:06 remaining in the first half.
The Badgers ended the first half shooting 8-of-11 from 3-point distance. For the game, Wisconsin finished 11-of-31 from long range. Meanwhile, the Hawkeyes went 33-of-75 (44 percent) from the field, including 7-of-24 (29.2 percent) from 3-point range.
"First half, Wisconsin just shot the lights out," Bluder said. "They did a great job, but I don't think our defense was where it needed to be, but again, they put the ball in the hole."
With the team trailing by eight with 14:33 remaining, another freshman, this time Bethany Doolittle, got the offense going with consecutive low post buckets. Logic followed with a driving layup that brought the deficit to two. Shortly after, junior Theairra Taylor knocked down a long jumper to tie the game at 56. Logic ensued with a runner in the lane that was followed by a Morgan Johnson lay-in that capped a 12-0 Iowa run and gave the Hawkeyes a 60-56 lead with 9:27 left.
"I'm proud of my team, the way they came back in the second half," Bluder said. "We played much better defense in the second half and obviously defended the 3 better."
With the lead in hand, the Hawkeye guards continued to feed Johnson the ball under the basket. Johnson ended up with 27 points and 11 rebounds; her second straight double-double.
"We try to go to Morgan a lot," Bluder said. "There's no doubt about that. She didn't have a very good game the first time we played Wisconsin, so I'm glad she was able to turn it around tonight."
While Johnson was able to score in the low post and Logic penetrated and scored in the lane, the rest of the Iowa offense struggled to contribute in the late portions of the second half. Johnson and Logic scored 17 of Iowa's 21 final points in regulation.
The Badgers managed to stay within striking distance and with 1:09 left in the game, Wisconsin's Taylor Wurtz tied the game at 73 with a 3-pointer.
The Hawkeyes had a chance to end the game in regulation, but Wahlin's driving layup was off the mark and the put back attempt was blocked.
In overtime, Iowa scored the first four points only to promptly allow four points to Wisconsin. With the game tied and 2:30 remaining, Johnson and Logic came up big again. Johnson nailed a baseline jumper to give the Hawkeyes a two point lead, and Logic followed by pulling off a turnaround fadeaway jumper just below the free throw line. The defense came up with consecutive stops, and Logic then salted the game away with four-straight free throws.
The win marks back-to-back victories for the Hawkeyes and improves their record to 13-10 overall and an even 5-5 in Big Ten play. Wisconsin falls to 8-14 overall and 4-6 in conference play.
The win was bittersweet for the Hawkeyes, as leading scorer Jaime Printy went down with an apparent knee injury late in the overtime period.
"Jaime doesn't feel good about it," said Bluder. "The doctor's looking at it right now, but as of right now she doesn't feel very good about it. It's pretty bittersweet."
Next up for the Hawkeyes is a trip to Bloomington, Ind., on Sunday to face off with the Hoosiers. Game time is at 1 p.m. (CT).