The independent newspaper of the University of Iowa community since 1868

The Daily Iowan

The independent newspaper of the University of Iowa community since 1868

The Daily Iowan

The independent newspaper of the University of Iowa community since 1868

The Daily Iowan

‘It just wasn’t good Iowa basketball:’ Caitlin Clark, Hawkeyes shoot poorly in 65-58 loss to Kansas State

The team went 2-of-21 from the three point line and 36 percent from the field.
Emily Nyberg
Iowa guard Caitlin Clark shoots a three-pointer during a basketball game between No. 2 Iowa and Kansas State at Carver-Hawkeye Arena in Iowa City on Thursday, Nov. 16, 2023. Clark scored just 24 points for Iowa, tying her lowest-scoring game of the season against UNI on Nov. 12. The Wildcats defeated the Hawkeyes, 65-58.

Caitlin Clark said the Iowa women’s basketball team never got into a rhythm on Thursday night as the No. 2 Hawkeyes suffered their first loss to Kansas State, 65-58. 

Poor shooting was the detriment for the Hawkeyes on the evening as the team shot just 36 percent upon taking 61 attempts and went 2-of-21 from the three-point line — with Clark accounting for both of the makes as well as 14 misses of her own.

“We have to understand that we’re not going to shoot the ball great every game, and I’m not going to shoot the ball great every game, but we have to find other ways to win,” Clark said at the post-game press conference. 

She finished the game with 24 points after going  9-for-32 from the field — the first time in her collegiate career that she has missed more than 20 shots.

Iowa is the third top-three team to lose so far this season as former No. 2 UConn lost to North Carolina State, 92-81 and former No. 1 LSU lost to then-No. 20 Colorado, 92-78, in the first week of games. 

And Kansas State also pulled off the upset against Iowa last year, beating the Hawkeyes, 84-83, in the fourth game of the regular season. 

Iowa head coach Lisa Bluder said the Wildcats are always tough to play due to their size and defensive prowess. 

“They’re long, were always in great positions, and got back in transition really well,” she said in the post-game press conference. “They have all the elements of being a really good team.”

Iowa maintained a lead much of the second half but couldn’t hold onto it as the game went deeper in the fourth quarter.

Clark scored just two points in the fourth, and the Wildcats’ star center Ayoka Lee recorded 10 of her 22 points as Kansas State closed on a 12-0 run to which Iowa had no answer. 

“We didn’t take advantage of the momentum,” Bluder said. “They beat us in the fourth quarter — they beat us in crunch time.” 

Turnovers also hurt Iowa as the Hawkeyes had a whopping 16 in the game, resulting in 15 points for Kansas State, on just nine assists. Clark said there were too many instances of turnovers occurring off of dropped passes. 

“It’s just not like us,” she said. “We’re still getting used to playing with one another, but at the same time, those aren’t mistakes we usually make on a day-to-day basis.” 

Despite this, the issue that will stick with Bluder the most after this game is the Hawkeyes’ failure to take advantage of better shooting performances by Iowa bigs.

Forward Hannah Stuelke recorded nine points in the first half but had just one shot attempt in the second, the Hawkeyes failing to find her for more scoring opportunities.

“[Our centers] need to have more looks, and we have to have more faith in them, and I’m not sure if we have that right now,” Bluder said, noting Stuelke combining with Iowa centers Addison O’Grady and Sharon Goodman to shoot almost 60 percent on the night.

The Hawkeyes will have to brush this defeat off quickly as they return to Carver-Hawkeye Arena on Sunday to take on Bluder’s former team coached in the 3-0 Drake Bulldogs.

Moving forward, Clark said she’ll work on getting her teammates involved when she isn’t having the best shooting performance.

“No matter who it is you’re stepping on the court with, you can beat anybody and you can lose to anybody, and that’s the great thing about women’s basketball,” she said.

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About the Contributors
Cooper Worth
Cooper Worth, Pregame reporter
Cooper Worth is a Pregame Reporter for The Daily Iowan. He is a senior at the University of Iowa majoring in journalism and mass communication. He is also earning a minor in communication studies and an entrepreneurial management certificate. This is his third year at the DI, previously serving as a News Editor and as a News Reporter covering local government in Johnson County for the DI. Cooper interned for the Telegraph Herald in Dubuque, Iowa during the summer of 2023 as a general news reporter.
Emily Nyberg
Emily Nyberg, Visual Editor
Emily Nyberg is a second-year student at the University of Iowa double majoring in Journalism and Cinematic arts. Prior to her role as a Visual Editor, Emily was a Photojournalist, and a News Reporter covering higher education.