The Rutgers men’s basketball team’s winning streak came to an end as it fell to Iowa by a final score of 79-66. With the loss, the Scarlet Knights (11-7, 7-7) were swept in their season series with the Hawkeyes (14-6, 8-5).
After opening the night with a 5-3 lead, Rutgers fell behind and never got back out in front, trailing for the final 33 minutes of the game. Foul troubles plagued the Knights early on, as junior center Myles Johnson picked up two personal fouls within the first 2 minutes of tip-off. Overall, Rutgers ended the game with 20 team fouls.
The Knights also had their hands full with Joe Wieskamp of Iowa, who had a double-double on the night, including 26 points, while shooting 5-for-7 from the three-point line. Hawkeye Luka Garza would also record a double-double, with 22 points and 10 rebounds. Meanwhile, Rutgers’ inability to score from long range hindered the team all night, as the Knights ended the game shooting 6-for-28 from outside the arc.
Senior guard Geo Baker would be 1 of 2 players from Rutgers to reach double-digit points, recording his fifth consecutive double-digit performance with 11 points.
While the Knights were called for 20 personal fouls, Iowa was called for 13. The Hawkeyes ended up shooting 14 more free throws than Rutgers.
Toward the end of the game, freshman guard Jaden Jones made his debut, logging 2 minutes and an assist. Jones was a four-star recruit for the Knights who committed to the school in March 2020 and enrolled a semester early, having practiced since Jan. 16 with the team.
Rutgers now has just six games left on its schedule, with No. 3 Michigan being the only ranked opponent. The rest of the matchups include four opponents that the Knights have already beaten this season.
Selection Sunday also draws closer, as Rutgers' NCAA Tournament fate lies a little more than four weeks away. Having lost the chance in 2020 after it was canceled due to the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), the Knights will once again have the opportunity to snap the program’s 30-year drought of appearing in the national tournament.
Rutgers will return home on Saturday for their next game against Northwestern at the Rutgers Athletic Center. Tip-off is set for 5 p.m. and will air on the Big Ten Network.
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