Matt Bohannon torching Prime Time

BY KYLE MANN | JULY 08, 2014 5:00 AM

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When Randy Larson drafted Iowa center Adam Woodbury with his first selection in the Prime Time League draft, he expected Woodbury to be the motor on his team. What he didn’t anticipate was the impact that Northern Iowa guard Matt Bohannon would have.

Now, with the help of Woodbury, Bohannon is stealing the show.

The Hawkeye center has performed very well thus far, perhaps even outplaying the expectations his draft position may suggest, averaging 25 points per game, good for second in the league. With that said, what Bohannon has accomplished is astounding.

The 6-4 guard from Linn-Mar High has a 9-point lead over his teammate for the league lead in scoring at a remarkable 34 points per game. Bohannon scored 29 points in a loss in Week 3, but that comes on the heels of a 40-point explosion in a 1-point victory over Kevin Sander’s team in Week 2.

Kirkwood guard Matt Lassen was on the opposing bench for Bohannon’s big night, and he also played with Bohannon at Linn-Mar. Although not pleased with the loss, Lassen was impressed by his former teammate’s showing but not the least surprised.

“I’m not surprised at all,” Lassen said. “It just seemed like he couldn’t miss.”

He watched Bohannon torch high-school opponents for years, but he is concerned for the well-being of his college opponents moving forward.

“Matt’s the biggest gym rat I know,” said Lassen. “I’m sure he’s outworking everybody up at UNI and in that conference. He’s become an even better shooter in college, and I didn’t even think that was possible.”

The Panthers’ junior guard has assumed a heavy scoring load with Hawkeye Anthony Clemmons being unable to play thus far, but as his shooting has increased, his efficiency has remained exemplary.

Bohannon is shooting 53 percent from the floor, which is very solid for a guard, 44 percent from beyond the arc. Furthermore, he’s shown the ability to make defenders pay for extending too far to guard his shot. Bohannon is second behind only Aaron White in free-throw attempts with 27 in three games, and he has converted on 85 percent of them, easily the most impressive clip in the league.

“I’m trying to do whatever will help the team win, whether that be shooting or putting the ball on the floor and attacking,” Bohannon said. “I think the way our team shakes up makes for some open looks from outside or on the floor getting to the free-throw line.”

Bohannon and Woodbury make for far and away the most dangerous inside-outside duo in Prime Time, and Bohannon appreciates how much easier they make things for one another.

“It’s funny because I play with Seth [Tuttle], and I think he’s such a big guy,” Bohannon said. “But you realize where he’s a 5 in the Missouri Valley, he’d be a 4 in the Big Ten. It’s nice to play with a guy who’s strictly a center and low post; it’s been quite a bit of fun.”

Larson has been delighted by his top two players thus far, and plans to continue to ride the duo to Prime Time success.

“Matt has showed that he can drive and find open passes for guys like Adam,” Larson said. “But if you give him any room at all from outside, he’ll make it. They open things up for each other.”

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