CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- Northern Iowa (No. 24 ESPN/USA Today) clinched the first outright Missouri Valley Conference regular-season championship in school history by defeating Creighton 70-52 on Tuesday night.
Ali Farokhmanesh hit 5 3-pointers and scored 17 points for the Panthers (23-3, 14-2 MVC), who tied Creighton for the title last season. Johnny Moran also scored 17 points, and Kwadzo Ahelegbe had five rebounds and four assists.
The Panthers raised their home record to 12-0 even without 7-foot center Jordan Eglseder, who was suspended for three games after his arrest for operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated.
Northern Iowa shot better from 3-point range at 48.1 percent (13 of 27) than overall at 45.5 percent (20 of 44).
Creighton started with a 7-0 lead, but Northern Iowa ran off the next nine points and never trailed again.
Maryland point guard Melo Trimble, considered a lock to leave the program before struggling in the second half last season, has withdrawn from the NBA draft and will return for his junior season.
Louisville's Chinanu Onuaku, who recently underwent a medical procedure to correct a heart rhythm issue detected during the combine, will keep his name in the NBA draft pool.
Andrew White III will return to the Nebraska men's basketball team next season after removing his name from the NBA draft.