DES MOINES, Iowa – Charles Swain scored 21 points and Ryan Skaar hit five 3s but a drought late in the first half cost the Simpson men's basketball team in an 84-62 loss to NCAA Division I Drake on Monday night.
In the final non-conference game of the season, Simpson stayed in it early. The game was tied 17-all before Drake went on a 27-9 run to close the first half. Drake ended up shooting 72 percent from the field in the period.
"We got killed on the boards and missed a lot of layups," head coach Charles Zanders said. "That was a big difference in the game."
Drake out-rebounded Simpson 32-18 and held a 44-8 advantage on points in the paint.
Jordan Daniels came off the bench to score a game-high 24 points and Reed Timmer had 19 to lead four Bulldogs (3-9) in double figures.
The Storm (5-6) hung with their Division I counterparts early, taking four point leads twice in the first half. Skaar's first 3 of the game gave Simpson a 14-10 lead at the 13:42 mark and his second tied the game 17-17 with 11:01 to play in the first.
Skaar hit two more 3s in the first half, but a Swain 3 was the only other shot the Storm could muster as Drake mounted a 27-9 run to close the half with a 46-26 lead. Skaar tied a career-high with 17 points.
Simpson played even with Drake for most of the second half, falling behind by 25 late before Brook Thompson hit a 3 with 11 seconds left to create the final margin.
"I'm proud of our effort in the second half. There were a lot of positives we can build on," Zanders said.
Up Next: Simpson begins Iowa Conference play on the road at Coe on Wednesday, Jan. 7.