BY TRAVIS JOHNSON, Associated Press
STATE COLLEGE, Pa. (AP) — Iowa coach Fran McCaffery just wanted to get back to work after the Hawkeyes’ surprising loss at Penn State.
Peter Jok scored 28 points, but No. 4 Iowa allowed 10 3-pointers in a 79-75 setback on Wednesday night.
Jarrod Uthoff had 19 points for the Hawkeyes (20-6, 11-3), who have dropped two of three to fall into a tie with No. 22 Indiana for the Big Ten lead. Adam Woodbury grabbed 10 rebounds.
Iowa doesn’t play again until next Wednesday against Wisconsin, and McCaffery doesn’t expect to make any major changes before facing the Badgers.
“We’re trying to keep coming,” he said. “We hung in there and we didn’t play well enough to win. What could we have done differently? What could we have done better? Nothing changes. No evaluations. No meetings. Just work. That’s all you do.”
Donovon Jack scored 19 points on 8-of-9 shooting for Penn State (13-13, 4-9), which had dropped five of six — including a 73-49 loss at Iowa on Feb. 3. Shep Garner and Brandon Taylor had 18 points apiece in the school’s second victory over a Top 25 team in two weeks.
“I couldn’t have done it without my teammates, (Taylor) and Shep passing me the ball,” Jack said. “It was all I could hope for. A big win for us.”
The Nittany Lions went 10 for 28 from 3-point range after going 1 for 20 from beyond the arc in the previous loss to the Hawkeyes.
It looked as Iowa might be headed for another big win when it scored the first eight points and stayed ahead for the first 13:46.
But Garner eventually got going and Isaiah Washington put Penn State ahead for good with a 3-pointer midway through the first half. A Jack dunk gave Penn State a 38-31 lead at the break.
“We obviously wanted to do a better job on Garner than we did,” McCaffery said. “We needed to be up on him and we were not. Our rotations were not as good as they needed to be. To their credit, they moved the ball, they got it to open people.”
The Hawkeyes pulled within three on Jok’s fourth 3-pointer in the final seconds, but the Nittany Lions held on at the line. They made 12 of 14 free-throw attempts over the final 1:25.
“We just kept fighting to the end,” McCaffery said. “I thought we could get it to even, maybe get them in overtime.”
Penn State was without guard Devin Foster, who was home celebrating the birth of a child.
Josh Reaves, who had missed six of the team’s last eight games with mononucleosis, helped replace Foster by playing 27 minutes. Reaves led the team with four assists and three steals.
“I felt like now is the time to unleash him a little bit,” Chambers said. “I think he did some great things.”
Iowa: The Hawkeyes went 25 for 35 at the free-throw line, compared to 17 for 22 for the Nittany Lions.
Penn State: Washington was 1 for 7 from the field, but went 6 for 6 at the line and finished with nine points. … Penn State also beat No. 22 Indiana 68-63 on Feb. 6.
Iowa hosts Wisconsin on Wednesday.
Penn State visits Rutgers on Saturday.
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