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Iowa loses MSU game to COVID

IOWA CITY — For the first time this season, the University of Iowa men’s basketball team has had a game postponed because of an issue with COVID-19.

The fifth-ranked Hawkeyes were scheduled to host Michigan State on Thursday at 8:07 p.m. inside Carver-Hawkeye Arena, but because of a pair test results among the Spartans’ Tier I personnel (student-athletes, coaches, managers and staff).

Michigan State center Mady Sissoko and guard Steven Izzo have tested positive, and the school said there was an additional positive test Wednesday afternoon.

“I’m really disappointed, but it just goes to prove that this can affect anyone,” Spartans coach Tom Izzo said. “I feel so comfortable that me, my son and my players did everything possible and followed every protocol as best we could. I’m really, really impressed with the way they have conducted themselves. This virus does not discriminate and I can’t emphasize enough how important it is to wear a mask, wash your hands and follow protocols.”

Iowa (11-2, 5-1) was looking to snap a six-game losing skid in the series against the Spartans (8-4, 2-4). The two teams are currently heading in different directions, as the Hawkeyes have won five of their last six games while Michigan State has suffered defeat in four of its last six.

Iowa didn’t find out about the postponement until after head coach Fran McCaffery’s weekly press conference.

“We don’t get a lot of information about other teams, unless we’re getting ready to play them,” he said. “So we were informed that there might be one or two guys out. If there are, I hope they’re doing well and getting better.”

The game was rescheduled as mutually agreed upon out of an abundance of caution surrounding the health and safety of the participants. It is one of six games to undergo a schedule change.

The Hawkeyes will now return to action on Sunday night at Northwestern instead of Monday’s regularly-scheduled event.

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