Depth a struggle for Iowa women’s basketball ahead of matchup with Minnesota

The Hawkeyes will have just seven or eight available players, as junior guard Gabbie Marshall is questionable to play against the Gophers.


Dimia Burrell

Iowa Forward Addison O-Grady fouls Nebraska guard Kendall Moriarty during a women’s basketball game between Iowa and Nebraska at Carver-Hawkeye Arena in Iowa City on Sunday, Jan. 16, 2022. The Hawkeyes defeated the Huskers, 93-83.

Dawson Moore, Sports Reporter

Iowa women’s basketball will be shorthanded for the third straight game on Wednesday when it takes on Minnesota.

The No. 25 Hawkeyes have had just seven available players for their past two games against Wisconsin and then-No. 6 Michigan.

On the 13-player roster, two are out for the season — sophomores Shateah Wetering and Sharon Goodman tore their ACLs in fall practice.

Senior Logan Cook has been out since early January with a lower leg injury, and freshman AJ Ediger suffered a high ankle sprain in a pregame shootaround on Jan. 31.

Hawkeye starters Gabbie Marshall and McKenna Warnock were also injured on Jan. 31 during Iowa’s game against Ohio State. Marshall dressed for Iowa’s game against Michigan on Sunday but did not play. Warnock did not dress against Michigan.

Now, Marshall is questionable to play on Wednesday against Minnesota — possibly giving the Hawkeyes eight available players.

“Just to give you the update: McKenna is a no, she will not be going for this game. Neither will AJ or Logan,” head coach Lisa Bluder said on Tuesday. “Gabbie is a possibility, though. We haven’t had practice since we’ve played at Michigan. We’ll have practice this afternoon and so I’m excited to see what she can do in practice today.”

Senior Tomi Taiwo and sophomore Kylie Feuerbach have been thrust into the Hawkeyes’ lineup for their past two games against the Badgers and the Wolverines, going through a learning curve on the offensive end of the court.

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Feuerbach was scoreless in 26 minutes and Taiwo had six points in 36 minutes against Michigan on Sunday.

“All of them usually come off the bench, so that’s just an adjustment in itself,” sophomore point guard Caitlin Clark said. “Tomi and Kylie having to start, I mean, you have to be ready from the get-go. You don’t get to see the flow of the game or what the other team is running. So, I think we kind of had a little adjustment period in both games and really just getting used to it.”

One bright spot though, during this period of injuries and fatigue in the Hawkeye program has been freshmen Addison O’Grady and Sydney Affolter.

Affolter got her first chance at extended minutes this season, playing 21 minutes and scoring seven points, including her first career collegiate 3-pointer. Affolter also grabbed six rebounds, four of which were offensive.

“Sydney has played very well,” Bluder said. “… At Michigan, I mean, she was scrappy the whole time. She played well defensively, you know, she hit a very big three for us. She played really, really well, and I’m excited about her emergence.”

O’Grady played 13 minutes against the Wolverines, scoring seven points while grabbing six rebounds. Two games prior against Wisconsin on Feb. 3, O’Grady scored a career high 16 points.

“I think you can say the same thing about Addison O’Grady,” Bluder said.”I know that wasn’t a position that we were low in, as far as Monika is still here, but, you know, Addy has a career-high points against Wisconsin, and I think she’s coming along nicely too.”

The shorthanded Hawkeyes will take on the Gophers for the second time this season. Iowa defeated Minnesota, 105-49, in Minneapolis on Jan. 20.

Tip is at 6:30 p.m. at Carver-Hawkeye Arena. The game will be streamed on BTN+.