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Feb 25, 2003

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Post Game Press Conference Audio
Ohio State Head Coach Jim O’Brien
Iowa Head Coach Steve Alford

By RUSTY MILLER
AP Sports Writer

COLUMBUS, Ohio – Chauncey Leslie hit two 3-pointers during an 8-0 run and Jared Reiner scored all 16 of his points in the second half as slow-starting Iowa beat Ohio State 71-64 on Tuesday night.

The Hawkeyes (13-11, 5-8 Big Ten) didn’t score in the opening 7˝ minutes and didn’t hit a field goal until more than nine minutes had elapsed.

“Shut ’em out!” a fan yelled after Iowa misfired on its ninth consecutive shot from the field.

Still, the Hawkeyes came back to dominate the second half, outscoring the Buckeyes 54-37 in a game both teams needed to keep alive their flickering NCAA tournament hopes.

Jeff Horner gave the Hawkeyes their first lead of the game when he hit a 3-pointer at the 13:58 mark of the second half for a 35-33 lead.

After Ohio State (13-12, 7-7) came back to take a 38-35 lead on five points by Brent Darby, Leslie hit a 3-pointer, Brody Boyd drove for a basket and Leslie hit another 3-pointer – as the shot clock was sounding – to give the Hawkeyes a 43-38 lead.

Matt Sylvester hit two free throws as the Buckeyes were in the double-bonus with almost 8 minutes remaining, but Iowa pounded the ball inside to take control. The Hawkeyes scored on 13 of 16 possessions during one stretch – mostly on drop passes inside to Jared Reiner, Glen Worley and Sean Sonderleiter.

On consecutive trips down the floor, Reiner was fouled and hit two free throws and then beat a defender on a layup. Worley zigged through the lane for a bucket before Reiner flipped in a shot while nearly falling down. Reiner then threw in a left-handed hook shot to make it 55-44.

Ohio State got as close as four points in the final minute but the comeback ended when Darby, who led the Buckeyes with 20 points, lost the ball when he made contact with a defender with 8 seconds left and Iowa ahead 69-64. Reiner scored off a miss by Leslie as the game ended.

Ohio State coach Jim O’Brien ran across the floor to scream at official Tim Higgins, who briefly yelled back before being hurried off the court by police. What remained of an announced crowd of 15,090 booed loudly.

Reiner finished with 10 rebounds to go with his 16 points after missing his only shot from the field and totaling four rebounds in the first half.

Leslie ended up with 13 points and seven assists.

Sean Connolly added 15 points for Ohio State, which had beaten Iowa in the last four meetings. Velimir Radinovic had 14 points.

The Hawkeyes had lost their last two games and seven of their last nine.

Even though Ohio State led 9-4 as Iowa struggled to score at the outset, the Buckeyes had almost as much trouble. They had as many turnovers (9) as shots in the first 10 minutes.