UNI rallied from a 13-point deficit with nine and a half minutes remaining but could not get the final basket to put them over the hump as 17th ranked Iowa held off the Panthers 76-73 last night in Iowa City.UNI coach Greg McDermott says he’s proud of his team and “there’s not an ounce of quit in that group. Tonight we got beat by a very good basketball team that, uh is really hitting on all cylinders right now.” The Panthers had a chance to win the game late but Ben Jacobsen’s shot in the lane was off the mark and Iowa’s Jeff Horner rebounded the miss and hit two free throws with four and a half seconds left to close out the scoring. McDermott says he has one hundred plays on his card and he just called the wrong one and got outguessed. He says they felt they had to get the ball in Jacobsen’s hands.McDermott says his team played well but could not get enough stops at the defensive end. He says defensively they weren’t good enough to stop Iowa, despite shooting the ball well and rebounding well. He says part of it is his team, and part of it is that Iowa is “pretty darn good.” Iowa coach Steve Alford said going into the game it was a matchup of similar teams and nothing from Tuesday night changed that. He says you don’t see many games where the field goals made and attempted are identical, the assists are identical, the turnovers are almost identical. Alford says his team got two more three-pointers and that’s probably the difference in the game.Alford says UNI was as good as he thought. He says they’ve played Texas and Louisville who’re nationally ranked, and he says UNI played harder than those two teams. Greg Brunner led Iowa with 23 points and says even with a double digit lead in the second half the Hawks knew the Panthers would make a run. He says Alford told them all week how good UNI is and he says they knew from watching the tape of the Panther’s game with Cincinnati that they would play very well.UNI takes a 3-2 mark to Missouri-Kansas City. Iowa is 7-1 and hosts Iowa State Friday night.
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