Joe Wieskamp Indiana

Iowa Hawkeyes guard Joe Wieskamp (10) knocks down a three point basket against the Indiana Hoosiers Thursday, January 21, 2021 at Carver-Hawkeye Arena. (Brian Ray/hawkeyesports.com)

It’s a lesson that Iowa should have known.
 
Be at your best in Big Ten play, because if not, you’re going to get bitten at the worst time.
 
That came on Thursday night, when an Indiana team that had been sputtering came to Carver-Hawkeye Arena and stunned the No. 4 Hawkeyes 81-69.
Iowa (12-3 overall, 6-2 Big Ten) had its five-game winning streak snapped and fell out of a tie for the conference lead.
 
The Hawkeyes were never right from the beginning, stonewalled by a Hoosier defense that had a week to prepare. The intensity that Indiana didn’t have in an 81-69 loss to Purdue seven days ago came alive, and the sluggish Hawkeyes couldn’t respond.
 
They went 11 minutes in the second half without a field goal, as Indiana (9-6, 4-4) crushed them with a 23-3 run after Iowa had a 53-44 lead.
 
“I think we have to understand a little bit better what this league is and the quality of the teams that are coming in here and that we're going to face on the road,” Iowa coach Fran McCaffery said. “I thought up until now we did a pretty good job of that.”
 
The Hoosiers were swarming, constantly chasing Iowa center Luka Garza with double-teams and always in the space of the Hawkeyes’ 3-point shooters.
 
“I thought they were tougher than we were tonight,” McCaffery said. “And that's disappointing.”
 
“I think Coach was talking about after the game, we’ve got to lock in in practice and really focus,” said forward Joe Wieskamp, who got swallowed by the Hoosiers in the second half, scoring just one point after getting 15 in the first half, including seven consecutive in a 43-second stretch. “I think we have to look ourselves in the mirror, ask, ‘Did you give everything you had during this game?’”
 
It’s an answer that can be seen in the numbers. Iowa was 24-of-63 from the field, but just 5-of-23 in 3-pointers. The Hoosiers shot 60 percent from the field in the second half, 66.7 percent in 3-pointers.
 
It was a failure on both ends of the court.
 
“I think it was a little surprising because we had been up for the challenge pretty much in every other game,” McCaffery said.
 
Garza got 28 points on 10-of-22 shooting, but Indiana’s defense clogged the lane underneath the rim with the Hawkeyes not hitting from the outside.
 
“I think, like a lot of teams, they were sending a lot of heat toward me,” Garza said. “I didn’t do a good enough job dealing with the double-team in the second half.”
 
“We didn’t get out of the way around the rim,” Indiana coach Archie Miller said. “We walled up. It wasn’t perfect, he got 28 and 12. Hopefully, he had to work for it.”
 
There was nothing from the outside.
 
The Hoosiers clamped down on Wieskamp, who took just two shots in the second half, missing both. 
 
“Credit to them, they did a good job in the second half of taking everything away from me,” Wieskamp said.
 
Jordan Bohannon, who had averaged 17 points in Iowa’s winning streak, went scoreless on 0-for-9 shooting, 0-for-8 in 3-pointers.
 
“They got up in his face and they chased him around and he had a couple in and outs early and just never really got comfortable,” McCaffery said of the defense on Bohannon.
 
CJ Fredrick, a 51 percent 3-point shooter this season, did not play in the second half because of a lower leg injury. Fredrick was questionable for the game because of the injury, but played 13 minutes in the first half. Fredrick, who has started every game this season and came in averaging 9.8 points per game, missed both of his shots and did not score.
 
“CJ’s definitely a huge loss,” Wieskamp said. “He brings such a huge presence to our offense.”
 
It left McCaffery looking for any sort of lineup to make a difference.
 
The Hawkeyes don’t play again until next Friday at Illinois.
 
“I thought they played harder, and we still had a shot,” McCaffery said. “So we did not play well, we got outplayed, and that happens. And you're right, you got to learn from it. You don't want to let it linger. I'm not in there blaming individuals — you didn't do this and you should have done that. It's we and us. We didn't execute and didn't complete the game plan, didn't fight hard enough tonight.”