Fran McCaffery's advice for Devyn Marble was for the junior to be who he normally is on the court.
Devyn Marble scored 21 points to lead the Hawks to victory Saturday afternoon in Iowa City.
For the first time in over a week, Marble looked like Marble in Iowa's 71-57 win over Northwestern in Iowa City.
“Everything about the game was just flowing the way we wanted it to,” said Marble, who finished with a game-high 21 points as Iowa improved to 15-9 on the season and 4-7 in Big Ten play.
It seemed only a matter of time before Marble shot his way out a slump that included going scoreless last weekend in Minneapolis.
“Good players go through those things,” said Northwestern coach Bill Carmody, whose team fell to 13-11 and 4-7.
The Hawks pulled away from the Wildcats in the second half, out-scoring NU 42-32 in the final period to sweep the season series. Iowa beat Northwestern, 70-50, Jan. 13 in Evanston
“It was a good team win,” said senior Eric May, who electrified the arena with a breakaway dunk less than five minutes into the second half. May finished the game with six points.
Ten different Iowa players contributed points to the cause on Saturday. Sophomore Josh Oglesby was the only other Hawk to reach double-figures in scoring with 10. Iowa finished the afternoon 24 of 50 from the floor.
Marble accounted for 17 of Iowa's 29 first half points as the Hawks took a 29-25 lead to the locker room at the half. Marble scored 9 points on 4-of-5 shooting in the half and doled out a team-high 4 assists.
In the midst of an 8-0 run by the Hawks, Melsahn Basabe squared the score at 17 with a jumper with 7:24 left in the half. The lead didn't last for long as the Wildcats tied the contest at 21-all then took a short-lived lead on a tip-in basket by Reggie Hearn.
The Hawkeyes shot just under 50 percent from the floor in the first 20 minutes of play, going 13-for-27 but only 1-of-5 from beyond the arc.
The first half wasn't all rosy for the Hawks as Northwestern maintained an 19 to 13 advantage on the boards. That allowed the Wildcats to turn 8 offensive rebounds into 8 points. Iowa battled back to win the rebounding column 34-31 thanks in large part to the Wildcats playing shorthanded in the second half.
Northwestern played most of the final period without starters Jared Swopshire and Alex Olah, both of whom were lost to injuries. Carmody said Swopshire likely suffered a knee injury while the 7-foot-2 Olah was removed from the game due to a possible concussion.
Reggie Hearn paced Carmody's squad in scoring with 13 as the Wildcats shot 35.1 percent from the floor for the game.
Iowa travels to Penn State Thursday night to take on the Nittany Lions at 8 PM. When asked whether or not he viewed getting to 15 wins as an accomplishment given the team's recent adversity on the road, McCaffery balked.
“To me it's the journey,” he said. “I'm not looking where we are [in the win/loss column] today.”
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