Point guard battle between Logic, Johnson meets billing

Ryan Murken

Iowa senior Samantha Logic (22) drives to the basket while defended by Baylor’s Niya Johnson, left, and Sune Agbuke. Logic recorded a triple-double in the Hawkeyes’ loss.

OKLAHOMA CITY – Heading into Iowa's Sweet 16 showdown with Baylor on Friday, the matchup to watch was between point guards Samantha Logic and Niya Johnson.

Billed as a battle of arguably the two best passing point guards in the nation, Logic and Johnson didn't disappoint.

It's also safe to remove the word "arguably" from the discussion about the best passing point guards in the country.

Logic and Johnson combined for 30 assists and one turnover as Baylor downed Iowa 81-66 in an NCAA Tournament regional semifinal at Chesapeake Energy Arena.

"Those are the two best point guards in the country," Iowa senior Melissa Dixon said. "To watch them go back and forth today was pretty awesome."

The NCAA's active career assist leader, Logic had 14 helpers, and the lone turnover committed by either guard Friday.

Johnson, who entered the game averaging a nation-high 8.7 assists, had 16 without a turnover.

"She is a great passing point guard," Logic said. "You almost want her to shoot instead of pass, because she just finds her teammates and puts them in a position to score."

In the final game of her Iowa career, Logic notched her sixth career triple-double, finishing with 13 points and 10 rebounds to go with the 14 assists.

Logic upped her school-record total to 898 assists, the second most in Big Ten history.

"Sam is such a great player," Dixon said. "She just did what she always does tonight."

Johnson was not to be outdone.

The 5-foot-8 junior finished with 10 points and seven rebounds as Baylor shot 47 percent from the floor.

Johnson's 16 assists was one short of her career high of 17, set earlier this season.

"I was really just finding the open teammate, trying to drive and attack, make them close down on me and hit Sune (Agbuke) in her sweet spot, which is the free-throw line," Johnson said. "Just finding my teammates."

Logic had eight assists, seven points and six rebounds in the second half as Iowa tried to battle back from an eight-point halftime deficit.

The 14 assists for Logic matched her career high that she had achieved three times, most recently at Illinois earlier this season.

"We didn't play well enough to win today, but we battled," Logic said. "We battled the whole time, and that is all you can really ask for when you aren't playing the best you can."

Reach Ryan Murken at 319-339-7369 or rmurken@press-citizen.com and follow him on Twitter at @rmmurken.