College Sports

After blowing 25-point lead, Tennessee survives Iowa, gives SEC four teams in Sweet 16

What came easy in the first half became a tough task in the second half.

Then overtime became the Tennessee Volunteers’ salvation in Sunday’s South Regional second-round game with the Iowa Hawkeyes in Columbus Ohio.

The Vols escaped the Hawkeyes, 83-77, in the 2019 NCAA Tournament’s first overtime game.

Grant Williams was a force in overtime.

He scored six points with an assist and a key steal in overtime.

Tennessee blew a 25-point lead with Iowa’s big second-half comeback to force overtime. The Vols had a chance to win it with the last shot in regulation, but Jordan Bone missed a three-pointer and Iowa corralled the rebound as time expired.

Tennessee, the No. 2 seed in the South, joins Kentucky, the 2 seed in the Midwest, Auburn, the 5 in the Midwest, and LSU, the 3 in the East, as SEC teams in the Sweet 16.

Sports reporter Jason has covered high school, college and pro sports since joining the Bradenton Herald in 2010. He’s won Florida Press Club awards for sports feature and column writing. He currently writes college and pro sports stories for the McClatchy East Region real-time team.