The Minnesota Golden Gophers picked up their first road win tonight in Iowa City! Minnesota trailed early, with Iowa extending their lead to four (15-11) midway through the first half. The Gophers then went on a 12-0 run to lead 23-16 with 2:35 to play in the half. Iowa went through an over 7 minute stretch without a field goal and at one point had 5 turnovers in 6 possessions. Minnesota failed to score in the last 2:30 and had their lead cut to 4 at halftime. The story of the first half was turnovers. Minnesota only had 1 but was able to score 11 points off of Iowa's.
The Gophers started the 2nd half slowly, but extended their lead to 7. However, another drought allowed Iowa to retake the lead at the 13:30mark. They were never able to pull away though. Minnesota picked up the defensive intensity and as the 2nd half went on they made it look like this could be a relatively drama free win. An Andre Hollins 3 pointer with 3:30 left gave them their largest lead of the game (11 points). Despite several attempts to hand the game away through some...less than smart plays, the Gophers were able to finish Iowa off.
-Defense, defense, defense. Minnesota has really turned up the pressure in recent games and tonight was no exception.
- Free throws. This game wouldn't have been close if Minnesota could hit an average FT %. That said, Nate Mason was (mostly) clutch down the stretch from the line and Mo daggered it to end the game. So I guess they hit when it mattered. EE was also 2-2.
- Close but no cigar. Multiple BINGO attempts were left on the card tonight.
Stat of the Game
This is an important stat line...
Take a bow Andre Hollins.
This was supposed to be the Andre Hollins 3 pointer with 3:30 to play. Unfortunately the Gophers did Gopher-y things. So instead, it's Mo Walker's strip of Gesell with 11 seconds left. After Nate Mason missed a free throw to leave Minnesota only up by 3, Mo (who had 4 fouls) played aggressively, forced the turnover, and then most important hit both of the free throws he earned by getting fouled.
The Gophers travel to Bloomington, IN to take on the Indiana Hoosiers this Sunday at 6:30 PM CT on BTN.