Clark eclipses 1,000 career points, Iowa women’s basketball routs Evansville

Sophomore point guard Caitlin Clark scored a career-high 44 points as the Hawkeyes took down the Purple Aces.


Grace Smith

Iowa guard Caitlin Clark looks to pass during a women’s basketball game between No. 15 Iowa and Indiana University-Purdue University at Carver-Hawkeye Arena in Iowa City on Tuesday, Dec. 21, 2021. The Jaguars defeated the Hawkeyes, 74-73. Clark played for a total of 33 minutes and 49 seconds.

Dawson Moore, Sports Reporter

Playing its first game in 13 days, No. 21 Iowa women’s basketball defeated Evansville, 93-56, at Carver-Hawkeye Arena on Sunday.

The Hawkeyes had two consecutive games canceled on Dec. 30 and Jan. 2 against Penn State and Illinois, respectively, because of positive COVID-19 tests within the Nittany Lion and Illini programs.

Sophomore Caitlin Clark had a masterful performance on Sunday, scoring a career-high 44 points while shooting 69 percent from the field. Clark also shot 6-of-7 from the free throw line. She grabbed five rebounds and collected two steals.

Clark eclipsed 1,000 points in her 40th career game Sunday, becoming the fastest women’s basketball player in the Big Ten Conference to do so. Clark’s 44 points also marked a Carver-Hawkeye Arena scoring record for a women’s basketball player.

Iowa was without its second and third-leading scorers, senior center Monika Czinano and junior forward McKenna Warnock, because of COVID-19 protocols. Junior guard Gabbie Marshall helped fill the scoring void, shooting 3-of-8 from beyond the arc. On the season, Marshall is shooting 43 percent from three.

Seniors Tomi Taiwo and Logan Cook made their first career starts in the absence of Czinano and Warnock. Taiwo scored six points on 50 percent shooting from the 3-point line while also racking up three assists and grabbing five rebounds. Taiwo’s stout perimeter defense was put in the spotlight as she finished with three steals.

Big Picture

The Hawkeyes bounced back from their Dec. 21, 74-73 loss to IUPUI — a mid-major program — Sunday.

Iowa forced 20 Evansville turnovers and held the Purple Aces to 34 shooting percent from the field and 38 percent from the 3-point line. The Hawkeyes also accumulated eight steals and blocked three shots.

Success on the defensive end translated to the offense as the Hawkeyes scored 26 points off turnovers.

Freshman standout

With Czinano out, freshman center Addison O’Grady filled in, playing 24 minutes.

O’Grady feasted in the post, dropping her first career double-double with 14 points and 12 rebounds.

O’Grady was also dominant on the defensive end, blocking two shots.

What’s Next

Iowa concluded nonconference play for the 2021-22 season and will head into Big Ten play with a 7-3 overall record. The Hawkeyes are 1-0 in Big Ten play, defeating Michigan State at Carver-Hawkeye Arena on Dec. 5.

Iowa’s next scheduled game is against Northwestern as the Hawkeyes ramp up Big Ten play.

The Wildcats are 9-3 heading into the game and have one conference win over Wisconsin. Northwestern has had its last three games postponed because of COVID-19.

The Hawkeyes have already had five games canceled or postponed this season, including two Big Ten contests.

The Hawkeyes will play the Wildcats on Thursday at 7 p.m at Carver-Hawkeye Arena. The game will be aired on Big Ten Network.