Iowa’s long-range shooting prowess too much for Nebraska

Owen Freeman had a career-high 22 points and Fran McCaffery tied the career wins record at Iowa in a 94-76 win over Nebraska on Friday night in a Big Ten Conference game in Iowa City.

McCaffery improved to 271-182 in 14 seasons with the Hawkeyes, tying Tom Davis who had a 271-139 mark from 1986-99.

Freeman, the reigning Big Ten Freshman of the Week and a five-time recipient of the award, was 11 of 13 from the field and added 10 rebounds, one of three Hawkeyes with double-doubles. But it was the 3-point shooting for Iowa (10-6, 2-3 Big Ten) that stood out.

The Hawkeyes made a season-high 15 3s, with Josh Dix making 5 of 7 en route to a career-high 16 points and Payton Sandfort adding five triples as part of 19 points along with 10 boards. Dix had only made eight threes all season.

Tony Perkins added 11 points and a career-high 15 assists for Iowa, which shot 52.2 percent and assisted on 30 of 35 made field goals.

Nebraska (13-4, 3-3) couldn’t carry over the momentum of Tuesday’s win over No. 1 Purdue, its first over a top-ranked team in 40 years. The Cornhuskers were 4 of 26 from 3-point range after making a season-high 14 against Purdue.

Josiah Allick and Rienk Mast each scored 14 points for Nebraska. Keisei Tominaga finished with 13 and Eli Rice added 11.

Iowa led 41-36 at the half but Nebraska, which was 1 of 10 from 3-point range in the first half, made a pair in the first two minutes of the second half to tie the game at 44. Keisei Tominaga’s drive gave the Cornhuskers their first lead at 48-47, but their leading scorer only made 1 of 5 3s.

The Hawkeyes went to a zone after that and stifled Nebraska’s scoring. On the other end they built a 13-point lead with 11:13 left, a burst fueled by two Ben Krikke 3-pointers.

Dix’s fourth 3-pointer put Iowa up 76-61 with 7:51 remaining.

Iowa jumped out to a 17-2 lead, but with seven minutes left in the first half Nebraska had gotten within 23-21. The Cornhuskers made eight of 10 shots at one point after a 1 for 8 start and finished at 50 percent for the half despite only one made 3-pointer.

Both teams are on the road for their next game. Iowa visits Minnesota on Monday while Nebraska heads to Rutgers for a Wednesday matchup.