Big First Half Fuels Rout Of Hapless Hawkeyes

By Chris Lauderback on January 10, 2008 at 12:39 am
D-Light takes flight (AP: Terry Gilliam)

Lucky for Iowa, Thad Matta and Hawkeye head coach Todd Lickliter are friends.

Riding the hot shooting of recent no-show David Lighty and the surging Othello Hunter, OSU broke open an 18-14 game midway through the first half with a 27-3 run to take a 45-17 lead at intermission.

With the game in hand, Matta rested his starters for the majority of the second half in hopes of keeping Iowa from disbanding their hoops program (just kidding BHGP) resulting in a 79-48 final.

The victory moved OSU to 3-0 in the conference for the first time since 1991 and made it 19 straight W's in conference play dating back to last season.

The first half looked more like the Globetrotters versus the Generals as OSU shot 58% from the floor outscoring Iowa 20-4 in the paint while dishing out 12 assists against 0 turnovers. Defensively, the Buckeyes swarmed the slow footed Hawkeyes leading to 9 turnovers and the match up zone forced Iowa to take 15 of their 21 shots from beyond the arc, hitting just 4, good for 26%.

Hunter weaved his way through Iowa's stiff baseliners producing 12 first half points on 6/8 shooting and the enigmatic Lighty dominated with 14 points flashing the seldom scene inside/outside game (2/2 3FG) that tends to only come out against bad teams but hopefully this can the start of something considering he's been nothing if not streaky this season.

Just as important as the Lighty sighting, Jamar Butler played only 21 minutes as he continues to fight the flu bug in between logging 39-40 minute games.

The second half looked more like an open practice with Matta giving extensive minutes to the reserves including little used Eric Wallace. The athletic freshman highlighted the second half with 10 points and 8 rebounds including 4 offensive before the crowd began chanting for true end-of-benchers Danny Peters and Mark Titus as early as the 5 minute mark.

For the game, OSU notched 20 dimes against only 6 turnovers and hit 52% from the floor while the D held Iowa to 33% FG including a dismal 18% from long range (6/33) and 14 turnovers. The lopsided turnover margin gave OSU a 24-3 edge in points off turnovers.

True, Iowa has nothing this year but OSU did exactly what they needed to do in preparation for the upcoming nasty three game road trip that heads to Purdue on Saturday before visiting #6 Michigan State and #9 Tennessee next week. It will be interesting to see how this team fares on the road in hostile environments after early season road struggles in the Garden against Texas A&M and at Butler more than a month ago.