Antoine Young had a season-high 23 points and hit a game-tying three-pointer with 4.6 seconds left, but Northern Iowa’s Anthony James answered with a three-pointer at the buzzer to lift the host Panthers to a 65-62 win over No. 13 Creighton on Saturday afternoon at McLeod Center.
Creighton (21-3, 11-2 MVC) had its 11-game win streak snapped in heartbreaking fashion while also snapping a six-game road winning spell. UNI improved to 16-9 on the year and is 6-7 in MVC play.
The heroics by Young and James were part of a frantic final 71 seconds that featured a combined five three-pointers from both squads. Creighton was down five points (61-56) after a James trifecta with 23.4 left. Creighton answered with a three-pointer by Jahenns Manigat with 15.7 left, only to have James split two free throws to put UNI up three and 12.4 left.
After CU used its last two timeouts to set up a play, Young would hit his three-pointer to tie it before James’ game-winner. James took an inbounds pass from Jake Koch along the right sideline, and used five dribbles to weave through the Bluejay defense and put up his buzzer-beater over the hand of an outstretched defender.
UNI led most of the first half, going up by as much as five before settling for a 31-30 halftime lead. Young led CU with 12 points at the break while Doug McDermott had nine points and six rebounds. The Panthers were paced by 11 points from freshman Seth Tuttle at the break.
The teams remained in close contention down the stretch before a 6-0 run moved the Panthers ahead 51-45 with 5:12 left. The Jays cut the deficit to one before James’ floater with 2:06 left put the Panthers up by three. Young then answered with a spinning lay-up at the 1:29 mark.
UNI’s Koch buried a corner three-pointer to put UNI up 58-54 with 1:08 remaining. CU’s Young was fouled with 54.1 ticks left. He sank both to trim the deficit to 58-56 before the hectic final minute.
Young led Creighton with 23 points, one off his career high, while McDermott had 18 points and 12 rebounds on 7-of-11 shooting. Gregory Echenique had eight points, 12 rebounds and three blocked shots. CU shot 42.1 percent for the game and outrebounded UNI 44-30 on the day.
UNI was keyed by 16 points from James, who had missed Tuesday’s win over Southern Illinois with an assortment of injuries. Tuttle finished with 13 points and nine rebounds while Deon Mitchell tallied 12 points. UNI shot 40.4 percent for the game, including 11-of-21 from downtown, and had just two turnovers.
Creighton will play on the road on Tuesday at Evansville in a 7 pm