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

Iowa men’s basketball notebook | Hawkeyes continue road trip with a visit to Ames to take on Iowa State

After losing to a high-scoring Purdue team on Monday, Iowa will take on a Cyclone squad featuring solid defense.
Isabella Tisdale
The Iowa men’s basketball team starters huddle up before a men’s basketball game between Iowa and North Florida at Carver-Hawkeye Arena on Wednesday, Nov. 17, 2023. The Hawkeyes defeated the Ospreys ,103 – 78.

The Iowa men’s basketball team continues its stretch of meaningful games this week, traveling westward to Ames to take on intrastate rival Iowa State.

Just two days removed from a 19-point road loss to Purdue to open the season 0-1 in conference play, the Hawkeyes turn their attention to the Big 12, where the Cyclones sit in 10th place with a 6-2 overall mark. 

Looking back at the romping from the hands of the Boilermakers, Hawkeye head coach Fran McCaffery pointed out several areas of improvement for the flow of the offense. The coach explained after the game that his squad was moving too laterally on the court and not looking to drive the rim. At his media availability on Tuesday, McCaffery expanded his thoughts on Iowa’s shortcomings. 

“Our ball-screen defense wasn’t great,” he said. “Our post defense is obviously going to be complicated with [Purdue center Zach Edey], but we’ve got to rebound better.” 

The Hawkeyes were outrebounded, 42-39, on Monday and allowed the Boilermakers to shoot 52 percent overall from the field. On Thursday, Iowa will square off against an Iowa State team that has shot nearly 49 percent from the floor over its eight games this season. 

Second-year guard Tamin Lipsey is the leading scorer for the Cyclones with 15.1 points per game. Hailing from Ames, Lipsey is also atop the team’s leaderboard in rebounds, assists, and steals. Last season, he was named to the Big 12 all-freshman team and led Iowa State with 126 assists and 73 steals. Those 73 steals are the most for a first-year in program history. 

“I think he’s got a complete skill set. I think he’s got an aggressive mindset,” McCaffery said of Lipsey. “I think [Iowa State] uses him taking full advantage of his talent … he’s played as a result at a very high competence level.”  

Another player to watch out for on Iowa State is first-year forward Milan Momcilovic. Standing at 6-foot-8 and 210 pounds, Momcilovic is averaging more than 30 minutes per game and has hit 21 of his 47 three-pointers – good enough for a team-best 44.7 shooting percentage from deep. 

Yet in the Cyclones’ last game against DePaul, the team’s upperclassmen did much of the heavy lifting, as junior guard Keshon Gilbert and senior forward Tre King led the team in scoring with 21 and 24 points, respectively. Gilbert, a transfer from UNLV over the offseason, is second on the Cyclones in scoring with 14.8 per game. Other transfers include guard Curtis Jones from Buffalo and Jackson Paveletzke from Wofford. The duo has combined for 12.6 points per game this season. 

Alongside the prowess of Lipsey and Momcilovic is a suffocating defense that has allowed just 58.9 points per game and a 37.5 field goal percentage to its opponents, ranking second and third, respectively, in the Big 12. 

“I think they’ve done a good job with transfers and getting them to play together,” McCaffery said of Iowa State head coach T.J. Otzelberger’s team. “I think that’s been impressive. That’s not always easy to do. They buy in defensively and share the ball.” 

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About the Contributors
Matt McGowan, Pregame Editor
he/him/his Matt McGowan is The Daily Iowan's Pregame Editor. He is a sophomore double majoring in journalism and mass communications and American studies with a minor in sport studies.  This is his second year with the DI
Isabella Tisdale, Photojournalist
Isabella Tisdale is a photojournalist for The Daily Iowan and is a senior at West High school. In her free time, she stage manages for the theater program at West High. She plans to double major in political science and journalism.