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Bryant outlasted by No. 24 Iowa, 72-67

Photo by DSPics.com
Photo by DSPics.com

IOWA CITY, Iowa – Juniors Adam Grant (Franklin, Va.) and Tanner Johnson (Lexington, Ky.) recorded season-high scoring efforts to lead the way for an upset-minded Bryant men's basketball team, but the Bulldogs were held off on the road by No. 24 Iowa, 72-67, Saturday night at Carver-Hawkeye Arena.

Grant matched his season-best with 23 points while Johnson added 16, three shy of his career high, as the Bulldogs erased a 12-point deficit and were tied with under three minutes to go before the nationally ranked Hawkeyes closed out the game with six of the contest's final seven points.

GAME INFORMATION
No. 24 Iowa 72, Bryant 67
Records: Bryant (3-8), Iowa (11-2)
Location: Carver-Hawkeye Arena (Iowa City, Iowa)

COACH GRASSO'S COMMENTS
"I was very proud of our guys' effort today. We controlled the tempo like we talked about and we competed well. We had a couple injuries and our rotation wasn't as deep as it has been. I'm very proud of how we fought. It was a tie game with two minutes to go. We had a couple of opportunities and shots down the stretch where we had a shot to win that game. For us, it's a building block." 

KEY MOMENTS

  • Bryant trailed by 12 in the first half and by nine at the break on a Grant three-pointer at the buzzer.
  • The Bulldogs scored the first seven points of the second half to cut the deficit to 43-41.
  • Bryant tied the game at 64 and again at 66 on layups by freshman Joe Kasperzyk (New Haven, Conn.) before Iowa responded with the next five points to secure the victory.

HOW IT HAPPENED

  • Grant scored 12 of Bryant's first 13 points and Johnson followed with a three to give the Bulldogs a 16-13 lead with 11:38 remaining in the first half.
  • Iowa responded with a 10-0 run to pull ahead 23-16 with 9:54 to play in the opening half.
  • A 7-0 Iowa run gave the Hawkeyes a 12-point lead at 37-25 with 3:28 to go in the half.
  • Threes from Grant and redshirt-senior Byron Hawkins (Fort Washington, Md.) cut into the Iowa lead before the Hawkeyes extended the advantage to 43-31. A Grant three at the halftime buzzer cut the deficit to nine heading into the locker room.
  • Bryant opened the second half on a 7-0 run, capped off with a conventional three-point play from Johnson. The two-point field-goal attempt was just Johnson's second of the year and the free-throw attempt his first.
  • Iowa used another 7-0 run to push its lead to 52-44 before another three from Johnson and a Bulldog timeout brought the score to 52-47 with 13:07 to go.
  • An Iowa three-pointer gave the Hawkeyes a 64-56 advantage with 6:32 to play before Bryant stormed back with an 8-0 run, getting five points from Kasperzyk and a three from Grant to tie the game at 64 with 4:53 to play.
  • A Kasperzyk layup with 3:08 remaining retied the game at 66, but Bryant was held without a field goal the rest of the way as Iowa held on for a 72-67 victory.

STATS

  • Grant scored 23 points on 9-of-20 shooting with five made three-pointers. The junior scored 20 points in the first half.
  • Johnson scored 13 of his 16 points in the second half, going 5-of-10 from the field and 4-of-9 from three.
  • Kasperzyk chipped in with 13 points on 6-of-12 shooting including a pair of game-tying layups in the second half.
  • Hawkins added seven points and seven rebounds.
  • Bryant shot 43.1 percent for the game, while Iowa was at 45.7 percent.
  • The teams were even with 32 rebounds each.
  • The Bulldogs were 7-of-12 from the free-throw line (58.3), while the Hawkeyes made 21 of 31 attempts (67.7).

GAME NOTES

  • Grant's scoring output Saturday moved him past Nisre Zouzoua for fifth in Bryant's Division I era in career points with 1,030.
  • Grant's 23 points – his fifth 20-point game of the season – matched a 23-point night against Columbia Dec. 7.
  • Johnson's 16 points were three shy of his career-high 19 against Fairleigh Dickinson Jan. 27, 2018.
  • Bryant falls to 0-2 all-time against Iowa and 0-11 against the Big Ten.

UP NEXT
Bryant opens Northeast Conference play Thursday at 7 p.m. when the Bulldogs host St. Francis Brooklyn at the Chace Athletic Center. Tickets are available by clicking HERE.

Season and single-game tickets for home games at the Chace Athletic Center are available by clicking HERE or calling (401) 319-TIXX.

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