March 21, 2011
Papa Dia leads SMU past Northern Iowa
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa - The SMU Mustangs used a 17-point, 21-rebound
effort from center Papa Dia to score a 57-50 victory over the
University of Northern Iowa Panthers on Monday in the
quarterfinals of the CollegeInsider.com Tournament.
SMU (20-14 overall) will move on to the semifinals and will face
the winner of Tuesday's Santa Clara-San Francisco matchup. UNI
(20-14 overall) saw its 2010-11 season come to a close.
Dia scored 15 of his 17 points in the first half, when he also
corralled 12 rebounds. The Mustangs led 31-23 at the break while
shooting 57.1 percent from the floor. UNI shot just 28 percent
in the first half and followed that up with 26.9 percent in the
second half for a 27.5 percent effort for the game. The Panthers
made only one 3-pointer in the second half on 11 attempts.
"We had a lot of the same shots against Rider but we just didn't
make them tonight," UNI head coach Ben Jacobson said. "When
those shots are not going, you really have to do things on the
The Panthers jumped out to an early 8-4 lead following a pair of
3-pointers from Jake Koch and Kwadzo Ahelegbe. But SMU quickly
regained the lead on a convention 3-point play from Dia and
another bucket. The Mustangs never trailed following a Dia
basket with 15:35 left in the first half.
Iowa City native Mike Walker drained a 3-pointer with 1:04 left
in the first half to give the Mustangs a 31-23 lead at the
break. SMU then upped the margin to 10 to begin the second half
on a bucket from Robert Nyakundi.
SMU eventually built a 13-point lead at 41-28 with 14:16 after a
triple from the Mustangs' Nyakundi.
The Panthers went on a 9-0 run and trimmed the margin to four
behind seven points from Ahelegbe. The Mustangs were able to
push the lead back to nine points following scores from Collin
Mangrum and a 3-pointer from Nyakundi.
UNI pulled to within five points at 55-50 following a layup from
Ahelegbe with 23.5 seconds left. The Panthers Johnny Moran
forced a jump ball in the in-bounds pass with give the ball back
to UNI with 20 seconds left. However, Dia blocked a layup
attempt by Ahelegbe and SMU's Walker drained two free throws
with 15.4 ticks left to seal the win for the visitors.
SMU will host the winner of the Santa Clara-San Francisco game
Friday in Dallas.
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