DES MOINES, Iowa -- Iowa, left for dead just two weeks ago, has found some life by figuring out to how play defense.Peter Jok scored 21 points in his final game in his hometown and the Hawkeyes thumped rival Northern Iowa 69-46 Saturday for its third straight win.Nicholas Baer had 11 points with 11 rebounds off the bench for the Hawkeyes (6-5), who jumped all over the slightly favored Panthers early and never let up. Iowa led 34-16 at halftime after a 16-3 run, and it pushed that lead to as much as 27 early in the second half.The win was Iowas biggest over Northern Iowa (5-5) since it beat the Panthers by 32 in 2000 -- long before the Panthers improved so much that Iowa and Iowa State scrapped their home-and-home series with them for an annual doubleheader on a neutral floor.I just feel like we bought into (defense), Jok said. We just keep talking and our chemistry has been good.Jeremy Morgan scored 14 points and added nine rebounds for Northern Iowa, which shot just 27 percent. Morgan was 4 of 13 from the floor.When those shots arent falling, weve got to have a different level of toughness, Morgan said.BIG PICTUREIowa: Iowa again looked nothing like the team that lost to Nebraska-Omaha 98-89 on Dec. 3. It harassed Northern Iowas shooters out of their comfort zone, clogged up passing lanes and turned many of UNIs bricks into transition opportunities -- which isnt what the Panthers want to do. If Iowa can continue to play like it has the last three games while incorporating talented freshman Tyler Cook back into the lineup, the impending Big Ten season wont look so foreboding.Northern Iowa: Granted, Iowas defense had a lot to do with it, but the Panthers took some awful shots early, and the Hawkeyes put them in a hole they couldnt dig out of. Northern Iowa missed the shots it should have missed and many of the ones it shouldnt have. The Panthers will almost certainly have to win the Missouri Valley tournament to return to the NCAA Tournament.THE NUMBERSIowa freshman Cordell Pemsl continued his torrid shooting stretch, hitting all four of his shots. He had 10 points and five rebounds in 18 minutes. ... Iowa owned the boards as well, with a 43-29 advantage. ... Spencer Haldeman had 12 points and Wyatt Lohaus scored 10 for Northern Iowa. ... The Hawkeyes got 34 points from their bench. ... This was Northern Iowas second game scoring fewer than 50 points. Xavier beat the Panthers 64-42 last month.INJURY UPDATECook (broken finger) might play in Tuesdays game against North Dakota. He is averaging 13.7 points and 5.3 rebounds. McCaffery will need to find ways to use Cook without disrupting his teams momentum moving forward.HE SAID ITBaer is just such a special player. Every time hes on the bench Im thinking of how I can get him back in. He has an incredible ability to come off the bench and impact right away, McCaffery said.UP NEXTIowa: Hosts North Dakota on Tuesday and Delaware State two days later to close out nonconference play.Northern Iowa: Has a big one on Wednesday at No. 7 North Carolina. Dont expect the Tar Heels to overlook the Panthers after losing to them as the top-ranked team in the country last season.---More college basketball at www.collegebasketball.ap.org Bill Melton Jersey Large .com) - The Montreal Canadiens embark on their first road trip of the season as they head out west to battle the Calgary Flames on Wednesday night. Custom Jeff Keppinger Jersey . To the surprise of many, it isnt the Wolverines but their in-state rivals the Michigan State Spartans. http://www.customwhitesoxjersey.com/custom-michael-jordan-jersey-large-461p.html . 8 Kansas to a 64-63 win over Texas Tech on Tuesday night. The freshman from Vaughan, Ont. Authentic Custom White Sox Jersey . Two pressure cooker bombs exploded near the finish line of the April 15 race in an area packed with fans cheering the passing runners. Three people were killed and more than 260 injured, including at least 16 who lost limbs. Custom Early Wynn Jersey . 10 Texas Rangers jersey for one last time. Young formally announced his retirement Friday after returning to Rangers Ballpark, his baseball home for all but the last of his 13 major league seasons. SAN JOSE, Calif. -- If Joel Ward needed any reminder of how close the San Jose Sharks came to winning the Stanley Cup, it was right there in front of him one night this summer in his hometown of Toronto.While Ward was out getting dinner with his girlfriend, he ran right into a Stanley Cup celebration party held by Pittsburgh defenseman Trevor Daley.I just happened to sneak a peek at a bar downtown and it was his, Ward said. I had to go chug a beer when I got home. Let it go. But understood. Hats off to them. They won.The Sharks opened training camp Friday, looking to put the disappointment of that Cup final loss to the Penguins in the past and gear up for another long season that they hope ends with a trophy celebration.Obviously with the way last season ended we should feel good about the journey and have a little bit of a bad taste in our mouth about losing in the final and come back re-energized and ready to make that journey again, coach Peter DeBoer said.The Sharks were without seven key players who are taking part in the World Cup in Toronto, including captain Joe Pavelski, alternates Joe Thornton and Logan Couture, key defensemen Marc-Edouard Vlasic and Brent Burns, and forwards Joonas Donskoi and Mikkel Boedker.Pavelski and Donskoi are expected to rejoin the Sharks soon with the United States and Finland having been eliminated from the tournament, while the others may not be back until early October with the tournament possibly ending as late as Oct. 1.They were supposed to be without an eighth player but forward Tomas Hertl pulled out because he was still recovering from a knee injury suffered in Game 2 of the final against the Penguins.Hertl said it was hard to miss the tournament but his priority is being healthy for the NHL season.I think I am ready to go, he said. Nothing the past two or three weeks bothers mme.dddddddddddd I can turn, I can hit, I can do whatever. I think its ready.The Sharks dont expect those absences to play a major role because the team is in the second year of DeBoers system and is only making tweaks instead of wholesale changes like last season.Also, most of the core is back with the only significant additions being Boedker and defenseman David Schlemko.Its a lot easier when you know what to expect and the way he likes to run practices and what he expects out of you day in and day out, defenseman Paul Martin said. Im sure hell throw a couple of new things in here to keep it fresh but for the most part it makes it easier having that familiarity.After a slow start to the season that had the Sharks near the bottom of the Western Conference in early January last season, the team hit its stride after that as the players learned DeBoers system and Couture returned from an injury.San Jose was one of the top teams in the league over the final three months and made the playoffs as the third-place team in the Pacific Division after missing the postseason for the first time since 2003 the previous season.The Sharks then knocked off their nemesis, the Los Angeles Kings, in the first round and won a seven-game series in the second round against Nashville before qualifying for the Stanley Cup for the first time in franchise history with a Game 6 win at home in the Western Conference final against St. Louis.The run ended when San Jose met up with a faster and deeper Pittsburgh team in the Stanley Cup Final and lost to the Penguins in six games.Youre still mad that you lost in the finals, but you know you get another chance at it next year, forward Patrick Marleau said. Thats the motivation. ' ' '
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