Paul Jesperson’s half court bank shot sent the 11th seeded Northern Iowa Panthers into the second round of the NCAA Tournament with 75-72 win over 6th seeded Texas in Oklahoma City Friday night.
The Longhorns tied the game at 72-72 with 2.7 seconds remaining. UNI brought the ball in without taking a time out and Jesperson took one dribble and tossed up the game winner.
Coach Ben Jacobson said in the postgame news conference he came close to calling a time out, but decided not to. He says they didn’t run a special play and normally in that situation are looking for Wes Washpun to get the ball.
It is UNI’s 7th straight win and moves them to 23-12 overall. They will play third seed Texas A&M Sunday afternoon.
Wes Washpun led the Panthers with 17 points. Jeremy Morgan had 16 and Jesperson finished with 14.
The Panther’s win makes it a trifecta for Iowa schools following a buzzer beater earlier in the day by the Iowa Hawkeyes. Iowa State advanced on Thursday and plays for berth in the Sweet 16 Saturday.