A trip to paradise turned out to be anything but that for Iowa on Monday. The Hawkeyes dropped their opener in the Cayman Islands Classic, 80-71, to Louisiana.
Iowa fell to 3-1 on the young season. It will play the loser of South Dakota State-Wyoming at 11 a.m. CT on Tuesday.
The Ragin Cajuns (2-1) of the Sun Belt Conference lost their season opener at Ole Miss, 94-76, but controlled Monday’s action during most of Monday’s game. They led the Hawkeyes, 37-17, at halftime.
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Isaiah Moss scored a career-high 24 points in a losing effort, while teammate Jordan Bohannon added 21. Cordell Pemsl cqme off the Iowa bench to grab a team-high eight rebounds.
The Hawkeyes overcame deficiencies in pulling out an 85-74 home win against Grambling State on Thursday that they couldn’t agains Louisiana. They continued their struggles against on-ball pressure, feeding the post and dealing with double-teams down low. On the other end, they couldn’t consistently stop dribble penetration in man or zone defense.
Iowa shot just 22 of 60 (36.7 percent) from the floor. In combining for 45 points, Moss and Bohannon connected on just 13 of 33 field goal attempts. Starting post players, Tyler Cook and Luka Garza, combined for just seven shots from the floor. The Hawkeyes turned the ball over 15 times to go with just 10 assists with Bohannon committing four turnovers with one assist.
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Meanwhile, the Ragin Cajuns made 30 of 61 (49.2 percent) from the floor. The battled taller Iowa to a draw on the boards, each team grabbing 39 rebounds. They held a 48-26 advantage on points in the paint.