IOWA CITY - The Hawkeyes welcomed instate rival, the Drake Bulldogs, to Carver-Hawkeye Arena. Jennie Baranczyk, who played for Iowa and was coached by Lisa Bluder from 2000 to 2004, is the head coach for the Bulldogs.
"I don't even understand why we play this game. We have everything to lose and nothing to gain." Said Bluder, "Why would you want to beat someone that you love and care about?"
The Hawkeyes took much of the first period to get into the rhythm of Drake's high tempo offense and contesting defense. Iowa only leads by a mere six points by the end of the first period.
Turnover Central was the name of the game in the second period, a name held mainly by the Bulldogs. As a result, Iowa pulled ahead at the end of the second half by 16 points after a massive layup by Tania Davis.
"I thought our second quarter was very good after we got into and offensive rhythm." said Head Coach Lisa Bluder, "I thought we had some really good looks in the first half."
The third period was owned by the Hawkeyes, taking their 16 point lead at the half, to another 15 point lead by the start of the fourth. The score, 49-64 with just ten minutes left in the game, the rivalry became a physical battle of the ball.
The final score of the contest, 89 to 76, with the undeniable help from 6'0 junior, Ally Disterhoft. A leader on and off the court, Disterhoft added a total of 20 points to the board for the Hawkeyes.
"I think this past week we've really stressed playing unselfishly and good things will happen," said Disterhoft.
Known for her driving layups and unending effort, Disterhoft amps the Hawkeyes' score in more ways than an ingenious way of handling the ball to the hoop. Against the Bulldogs, she accounted for four assists.
Disterhoft hardly leaves the court and never falters in intensity. With just 30 seconds left in the game, Disterhoft hugged the ball in an effort to fend off a relentless Drake defense. Forcing a difficult fifth personal foul called on Drake's Sammie Bachrodt, Disterhoft went to the hoop to shoot a free throw.
"Good teams are going to make good pitches, and I think we handled that well." Said Disterhoft.
The Hawkeyes have now won two of their three in-state contests, losing in a buzzer beater to Iowa State in Ames on December 11.
As their first Big Ten Conference game of the season, Iowa will play their next game on New Years Eve at 1:00 in Lincoln, Nebraska.
"We're so young; we're so young." Said Bluder, "And the future looks bright for us."