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Panthers Beat LaSalle in Paradise Jam Third-Place Game

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    April 3, 2014 | 10:26 am
    ST. THOMAS, Virgin Islands - University of Northern Iowa junior forward Nate Buss's career-high 23 points and 12 rebounds lifted the Panthers to a 65-50 win over the LaSalle Explorers in the third-place game of the 2013 Paradise Jam.

    Buss scored 21 of his 23 points in the second half as the Panthers turned a three-point halftime advantage into a 15-point victory.

    LaSalle posted an early 16-10 lead but it was erased quickly by a 10-0 run by UNI. The Panthers pushed the lead to 27-21 with 4:11 left in the first half before the Explorers cut it to one at 27-26.

    The Explorers cut the Panthers' lead to 33-31 on a layup by D.J. Petersen with 17:21 left. But the Panthers responded with a 14-2 run that gave UNI a 47-33 lead with 11:33 left in the game. Buss contributed eight points in the run off a pair of three-pointers and a layup.

    UNI's lead would shrink no lower than eight points the rest of the way and the Panthers would eventually open up a 20-point bulge at 65-45 with 1:32 left in the contest.

    UNI evened its mark at 3-3 on the year, while LaSalle fell to 3-4 overall. The Explorers are coming off a Sweet 16 appearance in the NCAA Tournament.

    UNI will take the floor again on Dec. 3 at Milwaukee. Tip is set for 7 p.m. in Milwaukee, Wis.

    NOTES: Buss averaged 14.7 ppg and 5.0 rpg game in the tournament ... Buss shot 16-of-23 (69.6 percent) from the floor in the three games ... Buss drained 7-of-9 (78.8 percent) of his 3-pointers in the three games ... Seth Tuttle also scored 15 points on Monday vs. LaSalle with 5 rebounds, 5 assists, 2 blocks and 2 steals ... UNI outrebounded LaSalle, 37-35 ... UNI's bench outscored the LaSalle bench, 29-8.

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