Saturday’s game between Iowa (18-11, 10-8) and Michigan State (17-11, 9-8) is a cut-and-dried case of ‘seeing is believing’.

The Spartans turned the ball over to the Hawkeyes seven times in less than six minutes during first half.  At that point you’re not a team, you’re a charity. 

But Michigan State was on fire shooting, with 59% for goal and an astounding 73.3 percent from outside the paint.

Spartan Tyson Walker scored 31 points, a season record.  Malik Hall penetrated Iowa’s flimsy defense at will.

By the end of second half hard-fighting Iowa looked hacked—frustrated, emotional, and making mistakes as a result.

Any Iowa fan leaving early during the second half can be excused.  The score was 91-78 at 1:34, Spartans leading.  What can reasonably be expected of a team down by thirteen points, with less than two minutes still to play?

A hell of a lot, apparently—thirteen points worth, in fact.  Hawkeye Payton Sandfort led the way with a three-point jumper.  Five more Hawkeye three pointers followed in rapid succession, with the final made by Sandfort at 0:03 on the clock tying the score 101-101. 

Hawkeye fans went wild.  While the Spartans made more shots from outside the paint, Iowa made them when they counted.

The game went into overtime and the Hawkeyes went into overdrive scoring 11 points in five minutes, ten coming by way of Kris Murray and Tony Perkins.  The game ended 112-106, Iowa victory.

Best Cinematic Moment: Iowa coach Fran McCaffrey’s high noon stare down with referee Kelly Pfeifer.  Then they slowly stepped toward each other.  McCaffrey was led away by an assistant, but it was still remarkable.  Did anybody else hear spurs jingling?

Michigan State takes on Nebraska next, February 28, 9:00 P.M.

Photo courtesy of the Detroit Free Press