A 21-point deficit and a team scratching and clawing to avoid falling to 0-4 in conference. The 15th ranked Indiana Hoosiers controlled the opening frame, jumping out to a 28-7 lead just more than six minutes into the game. ESPN’s win probability gave Iowa just a 5.6% chance of winning.

But, the Hawkeyes got mad, buckled down, and chipped away. The deficit was down to just 10 at the half, and eventually Iowa knotted things up at 61-all in the second. The difference? Some stout Hawkeye defense that clamped down inside.

“We had to dig deep on the defensive end, too, because I mean, we’re a little soft just coming out,” said Iowa forward Kris Murray, who played all 40 minutes. “We can’t spot them 21 points, obviously. It just gives us a lot confidence that we can win these types of games, especially when we get down a lot. But I’d say yeah, it’s definitely one that we really need to get.”

It ended up being the third largest comeback in program history. Iowa improves to 9-6 and gets their first win in conference play. Every starter scored in double figures, including forward Filip Rebraca, who anchored the middle with 19 points and 10 rebounds on 7 of 11 shooting.

“It shows us that we can play with the best teams in this country,” Rebraca said after the game. “Even though we were 0-3, we beat a really good team and now we understand that we can play with anyone. So going forward, this is a standard that we have to come in with every day.”

Even though head coach Fran McCaffery may not have done the best job keeping his composure, he said after the win he was proud that his players did.

“I think it says a lot about the character of our team,” McCaffery said. “Early on, we couldn’t get anything to drop. We had a couple of good looks, they didn’t go and they were capitalizing. I was just really pleased with our composure at that point.”

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