Big Ten

Hawkeyes storm back from 19-point deficit to beat Purdue


Hawkeyes storm back from 19-point deficit to beat Purdue

Two wins over two top-15 teams? Not a bad first week of Big Ten play for Iowa.

After a miserable first half, the Hawkeyes erased a 19-point deficit, scoring 50 points in the second half to storm back to beat Purdue, 70-63, in West Lafayette.

It was Iowa’s first win at Purdue since 2006, and the Hawkeyes became the second Big Ten team in the last 20 years to start conference play with two wins over ranked opponents.

But it sure didn’t look like any of that was going to happen, as the Hawkeyes couldn’t do a thing in a first half dominated by the Boilers. Iowa shot just 23.3 percent from the field, going 1-for-10 from 3-point range, and mustered just 20 points.

Jarrod Uthoff was the lone Iowa player producing anything, and he nearly produced it all, scoring 16 of the team’s 20 points. The rest of the team was 2-for-19 from the field for just four points.

Purdue, meanwhile, rained in seven 3-pointers in the first half and held a 26-0 edge in bench scoring. Kendall Stephens had 10 points and Dakota Mathias had nine as the two combined to hit five 3-pointers.

[MORE BIG TEN: Zak Showalter drops 21 as Badgers pull away from Rutgers]

But with the Boilers in front by 17 at halftime, the script completely flipped. Suddenly, it was Purdue that couldn’t do a thing offensively as Iowa poured in the points. The Hawkeyes made four of their first five shots of the half, and after an Isaac Haas basket gave Purdue a 15-point lead three and a half minutes into the second half, Iowa scored six straight to bring the lead down to single digits.

Back-to-back 3-pointers by Dom Uhl and Mike Gesell cut the deficit to five, and a Peter Jok layup had it at a one-possession game. With eight minutes to play, Uthoff made it a one-point game, and Uhl’s 3-pointer put the Hawkeyes in front for the first time since the early stages of the game.

A 7-2 Iowa spurt grew its lead to five with five minutes remaining, and the Hawkeyes kept scoring as Purdue didn’t get any closer than four in the final three minutes.

Iowa shot a stunning 64.3 percent in the second half, going 6-for-9 from behind the 3-point line in the final 20 minutes. Purdue had 10 turnovers in the second half and made just eight shots over the final 20 minutes.

[SHOP BIG TEN: Get your Hawkeyes gear right here]

Uthoff finished with 25 points, including 10 from the free-throw line. Jok had 11.

Stephens was the high man for Purdue with 12 points. A.J. Hammons finished with 11 points and seven rebounds.

Iowa improved to 11-3 overall and 2-0 in league play with the win. After beating a pair of teams ranked in the top 15 of the AP poll — Iowa scored a 13-point win over Michigan State earlier this week — the Hawkeyes should see a number in front of their name when the new rankings come out on Monday. Next up is a game against Nebraska on Tuesday.

Purdue, meanwhile, suffered just their second loss of the season, dropping to 13-2 overall and 1-1 in Big Ten play. The Boilermakers play host to Michigan on Thursday.

Former Illini champion Kevin Anderson upsets Roger Federer in Wimbledon quarterfinal


Former Illini champion Kevin Anderson upsets Roger Federer in Wimbledon quarterfinal

Former University of Illinois tennis star Kevin Anderson completed a marathon upset against an all-time great on the highest stage of professional tennis.

Anderson came back from two sets down to beat Roger Federer in Wimbledon’s quarterfinals 2-6, 6-7, 7-6, 6-4, 13-11 on Wednesday morning. He will play in the semifinals of the tournament for the first time in his career.

As a native of South Africa, Anderson played three seasons with the Fighting Illini and won the NCAA doubles championship during the 2005-06 season as a sophomore. The 32-year-old was a three-time All-American in singles at Illinois.

Now, as the eighth ranked singles player on the ATP World Tour, Anderson is a force to be reckoned with at the professional level. He made it all the way to the US Open final in 2017.

The former Illini star will look to keep his recent success going when he represents Illinois in the semifinals of Wimbledon this Friday.

Northwestern set to play Wisconsin at Wrigley Field in 2020

Northwestern set to play Wisconsin at Wrigley Field in 2020

Weeks will separate a perfect 10-year anniversary where Northwestern will play at Wrigley Field for one of its regular season games in the upcoming years.

Back on Nov. 20, 2010, the Wildcats battled it out with Illinois, known as the “Wrigleyville Classic,” which saw the Illini take a 48-27 win.

Even though it’s still two years out, Northwestern still planned ahead and announced its opponent for its game at Wrigley Field on Nov. 7, 2020, against Big Ten rival Wisconsin.

“Obviously an exciting opportunity for our football program to come back to Wrigley Field, one of the Cathedrals of sporting venues in the world,” Northwestern coach Pat Fitzgerald said. “When I announced it to our team, they were absolutely ecstatic.”

“The opportunity to play at Wrigley field is unique to us, being Chicago’s Big Ten team, and to have the chance to come down and play in an atmosphere like we did a few years back was a bowl game type atmosphere, and I look forward to this special opportunity.”

This game though will be a little different than it was back in 2010. Both the Wildcats and Illini played toward the west end zone due to a tight squeeze near the right field wall due to box seats that were added down the third base line.

Now, Northwestern and Wisconsin do not have to worry about that problem because the bullpens have since moved to the outfield.

Cubs president of business operations Crane Kenney spoke at a news conference earlier on Tuesday at Wrigley.

“So excited to welcome back Northwestern to Wrigley Field to talk about football again,” Kenney said. “We had an incredible experience with them back in 2010."

Kenney also mentioned new seating is on a temporary platform that can all be removed and the dugout tops can be removed as well, and the field will expand west, to allow for a longer field.

With a sellout crowd in the last go around for the Wildcats, don’t be surprised for another sellout at the Friendly Confines.