Gonzaga guard Jalen Suggs (1) shoots a 3-pointer during the first half of a game against Iowa on Dec. 19, 2020, in Sioux Falls, S.D. (AP Photo/Josh Jurgens)

Gonzaga guard Jalen Suggs (1) shoots a 3-pointer during the first half of a game against Iowa on Dec. 19, 2020, in Sioux Falls, S.D. (AP Photo/Josh Jurgens)

Star freshman Suggs leads No. 1 Gonzaga over No. 3 Iowa

He scores a career-high 27 points as the powerful Bulldogs defeat the Hawkeyes 99-88.

Associated Press

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. — In early December, Gonzaga paused all activities because of the coronavirus. The top-ranked Bulldogs had five games canceled due to the shutdown, and hadn’t played a game since Dec. 2 before Saturday’s showdown with No. 3 Iowa.

Despite the layoff, Gonzaga showed little rust in a 99-88 victory over the Hawkeyes. That seemed especially true for freshman Jalen Suggs who scored 18 of his career-high 27 points in the first half to lead the Bulldogs.

Suggs entered the game against Iowa averaging 13.3 points per game. He blew by that midway through the first half and finished 8 for 17 from the floor and was 7 for 10 from the 3-point line after going just 2 for 6 from beyond the arc on Gonzaga’s first three games. His previous career high was 24 against Kansas on Nov. 26.

“This past week-and-a-half, I spent a lot of time in the gym by myself, just late at night spending time getting shots up under the gun,” Suggs said. “Coming into this weekend, I really felt like my jump shot improved and I felt really comfortable with it. I was telling everybody that this was a shooter’s gym. It feels really good in here and I just came out today really confident.”

Drew Timme added 15 points and Joel Ayai added 11 points and grabbed a career-high 18 rebounds for Gonzaga (4-0).

Luka Garza led Iowa (6-1) with 30 points and 10 rebounds on 13 of 18 shooting. Joe Wieskamp added 20 points and nine rebounds for the Hawkeyes.

Gonzaga used a 24-10 run to open things up in the first half. Suggs scored 10 points during the run and Gonzaga continued to pour it on in the first half, building the lead to as many as 18 on a Suggs 3-pointer with just under two minutes to play. The Bulldogs shot 58% from the floor in the first half.

While Gonzaga was cruising, Iowa went cold from the field. The Hawkeyes went nearly five minutes without a field goal in the first half. The Hawkeyes entered the game averaging nearly 12 made 3-pointers per game. Against Gonzaga, they were just 4 for 22.

“I didn’t expect to shoot 4 for 22,” Iowa coach Fran McCaffery said. “We’ve got really good shooters, but I thought for the most part with the exception of one or two where we were contested, we had good shooters shooting open shots. We were behind a lot of the game and that happens sometimes.

“You miss a couple, then you miss some more. Our main success was driving the ball and throwing it inside. We got into the double bonus relatively early in the second half, but then we miss 12 free throws, which is also very uncharacteristic of our team.”

Iowa seemed to have one last gasp midway through the second half. After a Garza basket cut the deficit to 14, the limited number of Iowa fans in the building cheered as the Hawkeyes broke a timeout. A three-point play by Jack Nunge out of the timeout cut it to 81-71, and the Pentagon came to life as the Hawkeyes eyed a comeback.

The Hawkeyes got the deficit down to nine with two minutes to play after trailing by as many as 20 when Aaron Cook scored to make it 71-51 with just over 13 minutes to play.

Talk to us

More in Sports

Monroe's Iseah Canizales attempts a reception over Snohomish's Joshua Vandergriend Friday night at Monroe High School on October 22, 2021.  (Kevin Clark / The Herald)
Monroe beats Snohomish in OT to claim Wesco 3A South title

The Bearcats stopped a 2-point attempt in overtime to earn the league crown with a wild 42-40 win.

The Herald's prep football roundup. (Photo by Elaine Thompson)
Prep football roundup for Friday, Oct. 22

Prep football roundup for Friday, Oct. 22: (Note for coaches/scorekeepers: To report… Continue reading

Indianapolis Colts quarterback Jacob Eason (9) in action during an NFL preseason football game against the Minnesota Vikings, Saturday, Aug. 21, 2021 in Minneapolis. Indianapolis won 12-10. (AP Photo/Stacy Bengs)
Lake Stevens alum Eason ready for fresh start with Seahawks

The young QB, who was cut by the Colts this past week, said he’s eager for an opportunity to ‘grow’ in Seattle.

Washington running back Cameron Davis (22) reacts after scoring a touchdown during the second half of the team's NCAA college football game against Arizona on Friday, Oct. 22, 2021, in Tucson, Ariz. (AP Photo/Chris Coduto)
Huskies rally, extend Arizona’s losing streak to 19 with win

Trailing 16-7 in the fourth quarter, Dylan Morris throws two TDs as UW comes back for a 21-16 win.

Stanwood's Baylor Hezel, left to right, Olivia Rueckert and Grace Henken celebrate a point against Arlington Thursday night at Stanwood High School on October 21, 2021.  (Kevin Clark / The Herald)
Stanwood defeats rival Arlington in 5-set volleyball thriller

The Spartans win the back-and-forth match 3-2 and take the inside track on the Wesco 3A/2A league title.

Kevin Clark / The Herald

***Silvertips Special Sections*****
Yan Khomenko signals for substitution Sunday night at Xfinity Arena in Everett, Wa on September 6th, 2015

Sports:  Silvertips Special Section
Shot on: 09/06/15
Swetlikoff posts hat trick, Silvertips down Winterhawks

Everett wins 5-2 on the road in Portland and improves to 5-0 to open the season.

Lake Stevens' Jayden Limar races for additional yardage after a reception with O'Dea's Trey Stokes trailing Friday at Memorial Stadium in Seattle on September 17, 2021. The Vikings defeated the Irish, 20-3. (Kevin Clark / The Herald)
A look at this week’s top local high school football matchups

The key Lake Stevens-Kamiak and Snohomish-Monroe league matchups highlight the Week 8 action.

Kamiak's Wesley Garrett leaps into the end zone for the touchdown as Kamiak beat Mariner 41-14 in a football game at Goddard Stadium on Tuesday, Oct. 19, 2021 in Everett, Washington.  (Andy Bronson / The Herald)
Week 8 prep football leaderboard

The top local passers, rushers and receivers heading into Week 8.

White line on Green grass sport field for sport concept
Prep results for Thursday, Oct. 21

Prep results for Thursday, Oct. 21: (Note for coaches/scorekeepers: To report results… Continue reading

Most Read