IOWA CITY, Ia. – Devyn Marble’s 3-pointer from the left corner hit the rim, bounced twice on the top of the backboard and fell in.
It was that kind of offensive night for Marble, who scored 22 points in 29 minutes of Iowa’s 66-36 victory over Howard on Thursday night before an announced crowd of 10,704 at Carver-Hawkeye Arena.
“I shot the thing, and initially I thought it was just going to swish,” Marble said. “The fact that it went in didn’t surprise me. How it went in did. I’ve paid my dues here. I deserved that kind of love from my court. Every now and then I’m going to get those.”
Marble’s teammates weren’t as fortunate. The Hawkeyes (3-0) made just 4-of-21 3-point attempts against the undermanned Bison in a preliminary game of the Cancun Challenge.
“None of it was poor shot selection,” Iowa coach Fran McCaffery said. “The only thing you could have said is a couple of times we shot it quick. But everyone was open. I’m very comfortable with the shots we took.”
McCaffery said he’s not concerned about his team’s ability to score from long range.
“They just didn’t go in,” McCaffery said. “If good shooters are taking good shots, keep shooting.”
Josh Oglesby, considered the team’s best shooter, missed all five of his 3-point attempts.
“He’s playing great in practice,” McCaffery said. “He’s pressing a little bit. I felt bad for him.”
Marble did his best to motivate Oglesby, too.
“You’ve just got to keep shooting,” Marble said. “If you don’t keep shooting, you don’t give yourself a chance to make them.”
Mike Gesell made just one of his four attempts.
“We didn’t have our best shooting night,” Gesell said. “We were able to make up for it on the defensive end. Nights like this is where you really have to lean on your defense.”
Howard (0-2) shot just 29.6 percent from the field in the first half and 26.9 percent in the second half. Iowa is 16-0 over the past two seasons when giving up fewer than 60 points.
Marble was the only Hawkeye to make more than one 3-pointer. He had two in five tries, thanks to his fortuitous bounce off the top of the square.
Marble’s 22 points was the second-highest total of his career. Only a 31-point outburst in the final game last season, a second-round NIT loss at Oregon, was better.
“He’s playing with great confidence,” McCaffery said. “He has a diverse game. He can score in a lot of ways.”
The junior guard had made just 10-of-27 shots the first two games. But he got off to a quick start offensively on Thursday, making five of his first seven shots. He scored 11 of the Hawkeyes’ first 13 points and finished with 15 at halftime. That surpassed his 14.5-point scoring average. It also was more points than Marble had scored in 59 of his first 68 games at Iowa.
“I definitely wanted to come out more aggressive and get off to a fast start,” Marble said.
Aaron White added 16 points, 12 in the second half. White made 10-of-11 free-throw attempts and also had a team-high eight rebounds. One of those baskets was a transition dunk in traffic, thanks to a perfect pass from Gesell.
“I knew if I just put it by the rim, he’d get it,” Gesell said.
Halftime—Iowa 36, Howard 16. Team fouls—Howard 20, Iowa 16. Attendance — 10,704.
Category: Iowa Hawkeyes men's basketball