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Rank’s Bucket Gives UNI a 61-60 Victory Over Missouri State

CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – University of Northern Iowa sophomore forward Chip Rank scored on a basket in the lane with 2.2 seconds left to give the Panthers a 61-60 win over visiting Missouri State on Friday in the McLeod Center.

UNI trailed 60-57 entering the final minute of play but scored a pair of field goals to improve to 13-5 overall and 3-3 in Missouri Valley Conference play. Missouri State dropped to 11-7 overall and 4-2 in league action.

Junior guard Anthony James hit a shot with 53.2 seconds left to cut the Missouri State lead to 60-59. Missouri State’s Kyle Weems was then called for an offensive foul with 22.6 seconds left to give the ball back to UNI.

On the game’s final sequence, UNI’s Jake Koch drove into the lane, pivoted, somehow found a passing lane to give the ball to Chip Rank. Rank pivoted in the lane and eventually went up with the shot through a maze of bodies and shot went through with 2.2 seconds left.

MSU inbounded the ball immediately after the shot went through and the Bears’ Mike Bizoukas’s 80-foot heave missed to the right as the buzzer sounded. The officials huddled after the buzzer sounded to determine if a timeout had been called by MSU head coach Paul Lusk. The trio of officials, Paul Janssen, Steve Olson and Kipp Kissinger determined that no timeout was granted and the game was declared over.

MSU’s Caleb Patterson scored a game-high 24 points on 7-of-8 shooting from the floor. He made all three 3-pointers he attempted as well as all seven foul shots he attempted. Weems added 16 for the Bears on the strength of a trio of 3-pointers as well.

UNI was led by Anthony James with 23 points. James also corraled a team-high eight rebounds in the victory.

UNI will travel to Peoria, Ill., on Sunday for a 1 p.m. matchup with the Bradley Braves in Carver Arena. The game will be shown live on ESPN3.

NOTES: James scored 20 or more points for the fifth time this season and ninth time in his career … UNI is now 2-2 when trailing at the half – MSU led 32-28 at the intermission … UNI won the rebounding battle, 33-32 … UNI’s Marc Sonnen drained the first 3-pointer he took to extend his streak to seven straight 3-pointers without a miss (dating back three total games) … Sonnen did miss on his next attempt to snap the streak at seven in a row … the game featured nine ties and 19 lead changes.

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