Hawkeyes thump Kennesaw State
IOWA CITY (AP) — Peter Jok scored 27 points and Iowa throttled Kennesaw State 91-74 on Friday night.
Ahmad Wagner had 12 points and four blocks for the Hawkeyes, who are looking to reach the NCAA Tournament for the fourth straight season under Fran McCaffery.
Iowa built a 43-25 halftime lead and appeared to be on its way to a blowout win before Kennesaw State opened the second half on a 16-6 run that cut the lead to 49-41.
But the Hawkeyes settled down and scored the next seven to secure the win in their season opener.
Nick Masterson scored a career-high 29 points on 7 of 10 3-point shots for Kennesaw State.
Jok reached the 20-point mark for the 12th time in his career in 26 minutes. The senior shot 11 of 19 from the field.
Highly touted freshman Tyler Cook had six points and 10 rebounds in his debut. Cook showed some nerves, shooting just 1 of 7 from the field and committing four turnovers.
Cordell Pemsl and Nicholas Baer each scored 10 points for Iowa.
Iowa: This is clearly Jok’s team after the Hawkeyes lost their four other starters from last season’s team that won a game in the NCAA Tournament. The second and third scorers may change on a nightly basis with Iowa’s depth. McCaffery used nine players in the first seven minutes against the Owls.
Kennesaw State: The Owls, picked to finish in the bottom half of the Atlantic Sun, showed grit in the second half when they cut Iowa’s lead to single digits. It’s a good sign for Al Skinner’s team in his second year leading the program.
Iowa hosts Savannah State on Sunday for the Tigers’ second game in the state this weekend. Iowa State thumped Savannah State 113-71 on Friday.
Kennesaw State hosts Brewton-Parker on Monday, which will be one of only three home games the Owls play between now and mid-December.