Iowa men’s basketball blows out North Carolina A&T

The Hawkeyes outscored the Aggies by 36 points in the final 26 minutes on their way to a 112-72 win.


Jerod Ringwald

Iowa forward Patrick McCaffery dunks the ball during a men’s basketball game between Iowa and North Carolina A&T at Carver-Hawkeye Arena in Iowa City on Friday, Nov. 11, 2022. McCaffery scored 21 points in the game. The Hawkeyes defeated the Aggies, 112-71.

Chris Werner, Assistant Sports Editor

For the second straight game, the Iowa men’s basketball team pulled away from its opponent in the second half to earn a blowout victory.

Iowa outscored North Carolina A&T by 36 points over the final 26 minutes of action Friday night at Carver-Hawkeye Arena to secure a 112-71 win in the Hawkeyes’ second regular season game of the year. 

The Hawkeyes led, 35-30, with 3:48 left in the first half, and then ended the half on a 17-2 run to open a 20-point halftime lead. 

The Aggies, however, were competitive during the first part of the game, using an 11-4 run over a four-minute stretch early in the contest to draw within a 28-25 margin. 

“We didn’t do a good job on the glass in that one stretch, actually the whole beginning of the game,” Iowa head coach Fran McCaffery said. “They out-rebounded us in the first half. Give them credit, they came to play. They were physical. We had one stretch where, you know, we got what I thought were pretty decent shots five, six possessions in a row and we didn’t score and they hit some shots you know, they were running their stuff.”

McCaffery said two steals — one by junior forward Patrick McCaffery and one by junior guard Tony Perkins in the final seconds of the first half — were big momentum swings for the Hawkeyes. 

Up by 20 at halftime, Iowa outscored North Carolina A&T, 60-39, in the final 20 minutes. Thirty-four of those 60 second-half points came off the Hawkeye bench.

Bench contributes in second half

After the Hawkeye starting five of Patrick McCaffery, Perkins, Filip Rebraca, Kris Murray, and Payton Sandfort accounted for Iowa’s first 78 points of the night, the bench mob tallied the final 34 over the last 12 ½ minutes of action.

“[The younger players are just getting adjusted to the speed of this game,” Sandfort said. “They’re just getting used to it, so I’m excited for that.”

Eight Iowa bench players saw minutes and everybody except Luc Laketa got into the scoring column. 

“I didn’t give them much playing time in the first half,” Fran McCaffery said of his bench players. “I put them in, we had a difficult stretch offensively, I put the starters back in, and they played most of the first half. I told [the bench players] at halftime, I said, ‘If you guys get out there again, I’ll leave you out there.’ 

“They were really good, I thought, doing the things that they needed to do to gain experience and be ready to play against a team like Seton Hall. [With the bench players on the floor], we moved it, we executed our offense, we handled ball screens, we rebounded better, and we still ran.”

Patrick McCaffery’s fast start

Patrick McCaffery had nine of his career-high 21 points in the first four minutes of Friday’s game, and 15 in the first half. 

He shot 8-of-15 on the night, including 2-of-4 from deep and 4-of-4 from the free-throw line. 

“I haven’t been scoring the ball at the clip that I want to,” Patrick McCaffery said. “It doesn’t really matter at this point, you know winning by a lot. I’ve always been a scorer, I knew I was gonna have a big night at some point. I’m glad it was tonight, and I’m glad we won. The start always helps.”

Up next

The Hawkeyes will face their first road test of the season on Nov. 16 when they travel to South Orange, New Jersey, to take on the Seton Hall Pirates at 6:30 p.m. The game will be broadcast on FS1. Seton Hall is currently 1-0 this season, with a 79-52 win over Monmouth.