Iowa head coach Lisa Bluder reacts to a call during an Iowa/Purdue women's basketball game in Carver-Hawkeye Arena on Saturday, Jan. 13, 2018. The Boilermakers defeated the Hawkeyes, 76-70. (Joseph Cress/The Daily Iowan)

Hawkeyes can’t overcome shooting woes, fall to Boilermakers

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Iowa’s struggles on both sides of the ball were the difference in its loss to the Purdue.

By Sean Bock

sean-bock@uiowa.edu

All season the Hawkeyes have prided themselves on their prolific offense.

Against Purdue on Jan. 13 in Carver-Hawkeye, though, the shots weren’t falling, and Iowa couldn’t find a way to prevail, falling to the Boilermakers,76-70.

The Hawkeyes held a 2-point lead with 6:40 to go in the third quarter, but Purdue was able to steer the ship for the remainder of the game and hold on for the victory.

Iowa shot a respectable 46 percent from the field but had a hard time capitalizing on their 3-point opportunities, finishing 3-of-16 (19 percent) from behind the arc.

While the Hawkeyes couldn’t find any consistency from 3-point range, Megan Gustafson went off for a career-high 37 points along with 14 rebounds — her NCAA-leading 17th double-double of the season. The Boilermakers didn’t have an answer down low for Gustafson, but her performance didn’t seem to matter, considering Iowa couldn’t hit anything from the perimeter.

“Megan played great, but we need to get more people involved than her,” Iowa head coach Lisa Bluder said. “It can’t just be the Megan show, and to me, it looked like we were standing around and waiting for her to do all the work.”

“It makes it really hard when nobody is hitting from the outside,” Bluder said. “We can’t open things up for Megan, so that was a tough scenario.”

For the Boilermakers, senior guard Andreona Keys had herself a night, exploding for a team-high 34 points and 4-of-5 from 3-point land. She headed into the game with seven 3s on the season and was able to take advantage of Iowa’s lackluster perimeter defense.

“They did a triangle and two on us, so the rest of us were open,” Keys said. “Since I was open, I shot the ball a lot today. The coaches were on me to shoot the ball, and I did and got into a flow. I just tried to take my shots and tried to get other people involved, and they knocked down shots, too.”

Purdue center Nora Kiesler was given the assignment of slowing the potent Iowa frontcourt. Though Gustafson put up big numbers, the 6-6 Kiesler’s length and presence frustrated the Iowa bigs.

The Hawkeyes (15-3, 3-2 Big Ten), who have dropped two of their last three, will travel to Lincoln — one of the toughest venues in the Big Ten — on Jan. 16 to go head-to-head with Nebraska.

“The most important thing for us is to stay optimistic,” Gustafson said. “Even though our defense wasn’t there tonight doesn’t mean it can’t be there for the rest of the week and heading into these two road games. Get back at it, practicing tomorrow, and just keeping that focus.”

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Iowa players are introduced during an Iowa/Purdue women's basketball game in Carver-Hawkeye Arena on Saturday, Jan. 13, 2018. The Boilermakers defeated the Hawkeyes, 76-70. (Joseph Cress/The Daily Iowan)

Purdue forward Ae'Rianna Harris tips the ball off during an Iowa/Purdue women's basketball game in Carver-Hawkeye Arena on Saturday, Jan. 13, 2018. The Boilermakers defeated the Hawkeyes, 76-70. (Joseph Cress/The Daily Iowan)

Purdue center Nora Kiesler dribbles past Iowa forward Hannah Stewart during an Iowa/Purdue women's basketball game in Carver-Hawkeye Arena on Saturday, Jan. 13, 2018. The Boilermakers defeated the Hawkeyes, 76-70. (Joseph Cress/The Daily Iowan)

Iowa center Megan Gustafson blocks a shot during an Iowa/Purdue women's basketball game in Carver-Hawkeye Arena on Saturday, Jan. 13, 2018. The Boilermakers defeated the Hawkeyes, 76-70. (Joseph Cress/The Daily Iowan)

Purdue head coach Sharon Versyp crosser her arms while watching play during an Iowa/Purdue women's basketball game in Carver-Hawkeye Arena on Saturday, Jan. 13, 2018. The Boilermakers defeated the Hawkeyes, 76-70. (Joseph Cress/The Daily Iowan)

Iowa guard Kathleen Doyle dribbles during an Iowa/Purdue women's basketball game in Carver-Hawkeye Arena on Saturday, Jan. 13, 2018. The Boilermakers defeated the Hawkeyes, 76-70. (Joseph Cress/The Daily Iowan)

Iowa forward Chase Coley shoots over Purdue forward Ae'Rianna Harris during an Iowa/Purdue women's basketball game in Carver-Hawkeye Arena on Saturday, Jan. 13, 2018. The Boilermakers defeated the Hawkeyes, 76-70. (Joseph Cress/The Daily Iowan)

Iowa guard Alexis Sevillian looks to pass while being covered by Purdue guard Dominique Oden during an Iowa/Purdue women's basketball game in Carver-Hawkeye Arena on Saturday, Jan. 13, 2018. The Boilermakers defeated the Hawkeyes, 76-70. (Joseph Cress/The Daily Iowan)

Iowa center Megan Gustafson celebrates after drawing a foul during an Iowa/Purdue women's basketball game in Carver-Hawkeye Arena on Saturday, Jan. 13, 2018. The Boilermakers defeated the Hawkeyes, 76-70. (Joseph Cress/The Daily Iowan)

Iowa center Megan Gustafson adjusts her headband before shooting a free throw during an Iowa/Purdue women's basketball game in Carver-Hawkeye Arena on Saturday, Jan. 13, 2018. The Boilermakers defeated the Hawkeyes, 76-70. (Joseph Cress/The Daily Iowan)

Purdue players watch play during an Iowa/Purdue women's basketball game in Carver-Hawkeye Arena on Saturday, Jan. 13, 2018. The Boilermakers defeated the Hawkeyes, 76-70. (Joseph Cress/The Daily Iowan)

Iowa forward Carly Mohns looks to pass during an Iowa/Purdue women's basketball game in Carver-Hawkeye Arena on Saturday, Jan. 13, 2018. The Boilermakers defeated the Hawkeyes, 76-70. (Joseph Cress/The Daily Iowan)

Purdue guard Miracle Gray covers Iowa guard Alexis Sevillian during an Iowa/Purdue women's basketball game in Carver-Hawkeye Arena on Saturday, Jan. 13, 2018. The Boilermakers defeated the Hawkeyes, 76-70. (Joseph Cress/The Daily Iowan)

Purdue guard Dominique Oden shoots a 3 during an Iowa/Purdue women's basketball game in Carver-Hawkeye Arena on Saturday, Jan. 13, 2018. The Boilermakers defeated the Hawkeyes, 76-70. (Joseph Cress/The Daily Iowan)

Iowa head coach Lisa Bluder calls out instructions heading into a timeout during an Iowa/Purdue women's basketball game in Carver-Hawkeye Arena on Saturday, Jan. 13, 2018. The Boilermakers defeated the Hawkeyes, 76-70. (Joseph Cress/The Daily Iowan)

Iowa forward Amanda Ollinger smiles after drawing a foul during an Iowa/Purdue women's basketball game in Carver-Hawkeye Arena on Saturday, Jan. 13, 2018. The Boilermakers defeated the Hawkeyes, 76-70. (Joseph Cress/The Daily Iowan)

Iowa forward Amanda Ollinger low-fives head coach Lisa Bluder heading into a timeout during an Iowa/Purdue women's basketball game in Carver-Hawkeye Arena on Saturday, Jan. 13, 2018. The Boilermakers defeated the Hawkeyes, 76-70. (Joseph Cress/The Daily Iowan)

Iowa guard Tania Davis laughs on the bench during an Iowa/Purdue women's basketball game in Carver-Hawkeye Arena on Saturday, Jan. 13, 2018. The Boilermakers defeated the Hawkeyes, 76-70. (Joseph Cress/The Daily Iowan)

Herky the Hawk waves to a young Hawkeye fan during an Iowa/Purdue women's basketball game in Carver-Hawkeye Arena on Saturday, Jan. 13, 2018. The Boilermakers defeated the Hawkeyes, 76-70. (Joseph Cress/The Daily Iowan)

Iowa forward Carly Mohns falls to the floor after attempting to grab a rebound during an Iowa/Purdue women's basketball game in Carver-Hawkeye Arena on Saturday, Jan. 13, 2018. The Boilermakers defeated the Hawkeyes, 76-70. (Joseph Cress/The Daily Iowan)

Iowa head coach Lisa Bluder reacts to a call during an Iowa/Purdue women's basketball game in Carver-Hawkeye Arena on Saturday, Jan. 13, 2018. The Boilermakers defeated the Hawkeyes, 76-70. (Joseph Cress/The Daily Iowan)

Fans shield their eyes with sunglasses as light pours into the arena during an Iowa/Purdue women's basketball game in Carver-Hawkeye Arena on Saturday, Jan. 13, 2018. The Boilermakers defeated the Hawkeyes, 76-70. (Joseph Cress/The Daily Iowan)

Iowa forward Chase Coley shoots over Purdue forward Ae'Rianna Harris during an Iowa/Purdue women's basketball game in Carver-Hawkeye Arena on Saturday, Jan. 13, 2018. The Boilermakers defeated the Hawkeyes, 76-70. (Joseph Cress/The Daily Iowan)

Iowa guard Alexis Sevillian dribbles during an Iowa/Purdue women's basketball game in Carver-Hawkeye Arena on Saturday, Jan. 13, 2018. The Boilermakers defeated the Hawkeyes, 76-70. (Joseph Cress/The Daily Iowan)

Iowa head coach Lisa Bluder calls out during an Iowa/Purdue women's basketball game in Carver-Hawkeye Arena on Saturday, Jan. 13, 2018. The Boilermakers defeated the Hawkeyes, 76-70. (Joseph Cress/The Daily Iowan)

Iowa forward Chase Coley shoots over Purudue forward Ae'Rianna Harris during an Iowa/Purdue women's basketball game in Carver-Hawkeye Arena on Saturday, Jan. 13, 2018. The Boilermakers defeated the Hawkeyes, 76-70. (Joseph Cress/The Daily Iowan)

Purdue rebounds a ball during an Iowa/Purdue women's basketball game in Carver-Hawkeye Arena on Saturday, Jan. 13, 2018. The Boilermakers defeated the Hawkeyes, 76-70. (Joseph Cress/The Daily Iowan)

Purdue guard Tamara Farquhar attempts to shoot while being covered by Iowa forward Chase Coley during an Iowa/Purdue women's basketball game in Carver-Hawkeye Arena on Saturday, Jan. 13, 2018. The Boilermakers defeated the Hawkeyes, 76-70. (Joseph Cress/The Daily Iowan)

Iowa head coach Lisa Bluder draws up a play during an Iowa/Purdue women's basketball game in Carver-Hawkeye Arena on Saturday, Jan. 13, 2018. The Boilermakers defeated the Hawkeyes, 76-70. (Joseph Cress/The Daily Iowan)

Iowa's Carly Mohns and Zion Sanders watch while play expires during an Iowa/Purdue women's basketball game in Carver-Hawkeye Arena on Saturday, Jan. 13, 2018. The Boilermakers defeated the Hawkeyes, 76-70. (Joseph Cress/The Daily Iowan)

Iowa head coach Lisa Bluder, associate Jan Jensen, Megan Gustafson, Amanda Ollinger, Alexis Sevillian, Kathleen Doyle and Carly Mohns walk off the court after an Iowa/Purdue women's basketball game in Carver-Hawkeye Arena on Saturday, Jan. 13, 2018. The Boilermakers defeated the Hawkeyes, 76-70. (Joseph Cress/The Daily Iowan)

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