One of the nation’s best wears black and gold for the last time.
All good things come to an end, including the end of Megan Gustafson’s career in a Hawkeyes jersey.
One of the best to ever play for Iowa saw her career end on Monday night as the Hawkeyes fell 85-53 to No. 1 seeded Baylor. The loss kept the Hawkeyes out of the Final Four and ended the collegiate careers of Gustafson, Tania Davis and Hannah Stewart.
“I’m so blessed and thankful that the University of Iowa chose me and I chose them to play for them,” Gustafson said after the game.
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Gustafson became just the fourth NCAA Women’s player to score 1000 points in a season, finishing her last game with 23 points and nine rebounds. The list includes Odyssey Sims of Baylor in 2013-14 (1054), Jackie Stiles from Southwest Missouri State in 2000-01 (1062) and Kelsey Plum of Washington in 2016-17 (1109). Gustafson finished with 1001 points, averaging 27.8 points per game this season, highest in the nation.
Gustafson wasn’t the only member of the Hawkeyes team to celebrate a milestone in the final game of the season. Davis joined the 1000-point club for her career in the second quarter. Davis fought back from multiple injuries in her career, fighting each and every day to make it back from surgery to get back on the floor. The crowd was behind her through it all, giving her a well-deserved ovation when she reached No. 1000.
Davis spoke about the legacy of her senior class following the game.
“For me personally, I felt like the legacy that we left is completely different depending on who you’re talking about. Obviously Megan, coming in as a freshman, and you know, turning out, the type of player that she is, first team All-American and being the all-time leading scorer, rebounder, in Iowa history.
“Then you look at me, and I’m thrown and dealt a really bad hand, and had to overcome injury after injury; and to be able to fight back and make Big Ten Honorable Mention and to do things that I wasn’t supposed to do and be in the position and be in the Elite 8, places I wasn’t supposed to be.
“And then you look at Hannah Stewart, not playing her freshman year and to be a starter and keep playing for us.
“I feel like our legacy just completely different, but at the same time I feel like we’re all just great people. We’re great individuals off the court and I feel like that’s the legacy we’d rather leave, as opposed to, you know, the players that we have.”
Stewart didn’t leave the game without her own milestone, stealing four balls in the loss to Baylor, a season-high for her. The senior from Minot, ND played over 1000 minutes this season, scoring 400 points and averaging 11.1 points per game to go along with 6.7 rebounds. Saying the trio will be missed is an understatement.
Iowa will have three seniors once again next season as the 2020 class of Makenzie Mayer, Kathleen Doyle and Amanda Ollinger will look to bring the Hawkeyes back to the Elite Eight during the 2019-20 season.
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