Panthers take down Salukis 69-57, win their third straight game



Bowen Born (13) had another great game scoring the basketball finishing with a game-high 27 points in the win over Southern Illinois

ADAM JOHNSON, Sports Writer

On Saturday, Jan. 8, the UNI Panthers had a home matchup with a red-hot Southern Illinois team. The Salukis came into the game winners of seven in a row, but the Panthers had been playing well also. The Panthers came in having won two in a row and four of their last five games. This was set up to be a good one, and it was the Panthers that got the best of the Salukis. 

Bowen Born opened up the game with a 3-pointer and followed it up quickly with a jumper to get five quick points to start the game. The Panthers got another basket and were ahead 7-0. The Panthers kept the Salukis off the board for the first four minutes of the game, but they finally got a basket on a Dalton Banks 3-pointer. UNI’s good start allowed them to hold a decent lead for a good part of the first half, extending it to as much as 11 points when they led 22-11 around the halfway mark. Southern Illinois kept it reasonable, never letting the lead get any bigger than 11. They were never able to get all the way back in the first half however, and at the break the Panthers led 35-29. Born led the scoring for the Panthers in the first half with 12 points.

The Panthers started the second half on a good note, with a dunk by James Betz. The dunk started what was a fantastic run for the Panthers. They opened the second half with a 14-4 run, and had a 47-33 lead with 14 minutes left in the game. The Panthers looked to potentially run away with this one, but the Salukis were not done yet. They followed the Panthers run with a run of their own, scoring the next nine points, and cutting the lead to just five. The game remained close, with both teams trading off baskets. The lead was cut to as slim as three points, with the Panthers up just 60-57 with just under three minutes left. It looked like it was going to be a tough finish, but the Panthers stopped the Salukis from scoring a single point in the final minutes. Over the final minutes of the game UNI scored nine points of their own and took the victory 69-57. 

Born led the game in scoring with 27 points, while Tytan Anderson had a double-double, which is becoming a common performance for the big man. The Salukis were led in scoring by Lance Jones who had 17.

The Panthers win against the Salukis is their third in a row and fifth in the last six games. The Panthers are hot right now, and will play next on Tuesday, Jan. 10 at home against Missouri Valley Conference newcomer Murray State.