Recap: Drexel vs. Northern Iowa
Philadelphia, PA (Sports Network) - Timely free-throw shooting in the final minute of play was just what Drexel needed as the team slipped by Northern Iowa, 65-63, in the second round of the 75th annual NIT at the Daskalakis Athletic Center.
Samme Givens, who hit one of his two free-throw attempts with 24.3 seconds remaining in the second half, was 6-of-9 at the charity stripe overall as he finished with a game-high 28 points for the third-seeded Dragons (29-6). Also scoring in double figures for Drexel were Chris Fouch off the bench with 16 points and Frantz Massenat 11, although he shot just 3-of-9 from the floor and 4-of-8 at the charity stripe.
The seventh-seeded Panthers (20-14) were paced by Johnny Moran who dropped in 19 points and pulled down eight rebounds, connecting on 5-of-11 shots behind the three-point line to give him 201 three-pointers for his career (second- most in the UNI history).
UNI led by four points early in the first half, but the Dragons responded with an impressive 60.0 percent shooting effort from the field in the period, including 6-of-8 on the perimeter to build an 18-point edge and eventually claim a 38-28 advantage at the break.
In the second half the hosts made a total of just eight field goals, allowing the Panthers to battle back and cut the deficit down to just a single point at 64-63 when Chip Rank knocked down a three-pointer with 6.1 seconds to play.
Givens, Massenat and Damion Lee combined to make 4-of-6 at the free-throw line in the final 25 seconds and it was the latter who challenged Moran on the final three-point attempt of the afternoon, forcing the UNI sharpshooter to let fly with an awkward attempt from the top of the key that missed the mark at the buzzer.
Drexel now heads to the quarterfinals on Tuesday night where it will tangle with fifth-seeded Massachusetts for the right to advance to Madison Square Garden for the semifinals the following week.Game Notes