Kennesaw State takes ‘steps back’ in non-conference loss to Iowa

Terrell Burden had 14 points as Kennesaw State closed out the non-conference season with a 93-51 loss on the road Sunday to No. 25 Iowa.

The Hawkeyes, who shot 39-of-65 (60 percent) for the game, were led by Luka Garza with 23 points and Ryan Kriener, who added a career-high 20. Joe Wieskamp had 18 points for the Hawkeyes (10-3), who also had a season-high 14 steals.

The Hawkeyes got into the rankings last week and should stay with this win, although the Owls weren’t much of a challenge.

Kennesaw State (1-12) stayed close early, trailing just 30-22 with 8:39 left in the first half. But Iowa went on an 18-6 run, and led 49-30 at halftime. The Hawkeyes added a 16-0 run in the second half.

Kennesaw State’s nonconference schedule included eight road games. Sunday’s meeting marked the only Power Five school the Owls will face this season. They have back-to-back home games next.

“I thought we took steps back in that area and that’s on me,” said Owls coach Amir Abdur-Rahim. “I have to figure out a way to keep them more competitive, make them more competitive, and we’ll learn and grow from it and get ready for conference play.”

Burden had his fifth double-figure game in the last seven. Ugo Obineke was the only other Owl in double-digits with 13 points,

The Owls open ASUN Conference play with a home game Jan. 2 against North Florida.