EVANSTON, Ill. (AP) — Aaron White led a balanced attack with 17 points as Iowa broke a 3-game Big Ten losing streak with a 70-50 victory over Northwestern on Sunday afternoon.
Josh Oglesby had 14 points, and Melsahn Basabe added 10 for the Hawkeyes (12-5, 1-3), also broke a five-game losing streak against Northwestern.
Dave Sobolewski had 14 points, and Tre Demps added 10 for the Wildcats (10-7, 1-3) in front of 6,805 fans at Welsh-Ryan Arena.
Iowa opened a 25-15 lead by halftime behind Roy Devyn Marble’s eight points and steadily increased its lead through the second half.
The Wildcats travel to Illinois on Thursday and host Indiana next Sunday. Iowa entertains Wisconsin on Saturday, then hits the road for games at Ohio State and Penn State.
Northwestern missed seven straight shots through a 7 minute, 6 second span and shot 5 of 24 (20.8 percent) for the first half. Sobolewski broke the drought with a fast break layup with 2:27 left, leaving the Wildcats trailing 19-13.
Iowa also struggled from the field in the half, shooting just 10 of 28 (35.7 percent).
It was the second fewest first-half points by Northwestern this season. The Wildcats’ previous low was 14 on Jan. 6 at Minnesota.
The Wildcats trimmed the deficit to six early in the second half on back-to-back buckets by Hearn and Soboleski. But Iowa replied with Mike Gesell’s driving layup followed by a dunk and three-point play by White in a 21 second span for a 32-20 lead.
Iowa’s lead hit 17 points at 41-27 on Jose Oglesby’s baseline 3-pointer with 12:34 left in regulation. By the 8:38 mark, the Hawkeye advantage hit 20 at 57-37 on Eric May’s 3-pointer.
Northwestern never got closer than 19 points the rest of the way.
After a difficult first half shooting, the Wildcats improved to 10 of 27 (37 percent) in the second half and ended 15 of 51 (29.4 percent) for the game. The Hawkeyes were 29 of 62 (46.0 percent) and outrebounded Northwestern 43-33.
Iowa was coming off a stretch of three losses against ranked teams. The Hawkeyes dropped decisions to No. 5 Indiana, at No. 2 Michigan and to No. 18 Michigan State.
Marble, Iowa’s scoring leader, was back in the starting lineup after suffering an ankle sprain last week and scored all of his eight points in the first half. He missed last Thursday’s 62-59 road loss to the Spartans.
Also Sunday, Northwestern announced a three-year broadcast rights extension for football and basketball with WGN-AM, its radio home for the past 17 years. The new deal will carry both sports on the station through the 2015-16 seasons.