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Minnesota loses to Iowa 90-85

NCAA Basketball: Minnesota at Iowa Jeffrey Becker-USA TODAY Sports

Minnesota lost to Iowa 90-85 at Carver-Hawkeye Arena. The Gophers drop to 6-6 in conference play, and the magic number remains 6.

I am displeased with this outcome, and in such a state that the initial version of this was a lot of words people are not supposed to use in polite company. To avoid getting my writer access revoked by the powers that be on this blog, I cleaned that up into a rapid-fire of the good and the bad of the game.

The Good

  1. Minnesota was on fire from offense in the first half. 55% from the field and 66% from distance is fantastic. The offense was also in rhythm throughout, with 14 assists on 18 made baskets and 7-8 from the free throw. Three Gophers were in double figures in the first half, led by Dawson Garcia’s 18 points.
  2. Braeden Carrington had his best game of the season by far. I Loved his energy throughout the game.
  3. Cam Christie’s poster dunk.

The Bad

Dawson Garcia was injured after getting kneed in the “upper thigh” area and had to leave the game and never returned. Iowa outscored the Gophers 47-24 after his exit.

We could talk about other points: too many bad fouls by the bigs, meaning they could not contest effectively on drives, turnovers as the result of bad decisions instead of good Hawkeyes’ defense, or the regression to the mean in shooting, but none of those even together matter if Garcia plays in the second half.

Minnesota continues to play great for 20 minutes a game and has yet to play great for 40 minutes all season. That is why this team is fighting to be on the bubble instead of fighting to be a decent seed in the Tournament.

Notes

The slack chat among the writers for this game was spicy at the end.

Losing to Iowa sucks in all sports. Watching your favorite team give up the second-biggest comeback in Iowa basketball history extra sucks.

Owen Freeman is a player I expect I will hate watching for the next four years, and that is about the highest possible compliment I can pay to a player for Iowa or Wisconsin.

When the refs call the hedge man for a blocking foul, maybe do not continue to hard hedge without sliding your feet.

The Gophers’ next trip to Purdue is on Thursday.