Sunday, December 10, 2017
Sports

Vols rally for OT victory over Iowa

DAYTON, Ohio — With Jarnell Stokes using all of his 280 pounds to get an advantage, Tennessee pulled off the first last-minute comeback of the NCAA Tournament.

Stokes dominated inside as the Volunteers finally caught up in the closing minutes of regulation, then opened overtime with a three-point play that set up a 78-65 victory over Iowa on Wednesday night, finishing off the four-game first round.

The Volunteers (22-12) head to Raleigh, N.C., where they'll play sixth-seeded Massachusetts on Friday in the Midwest Region.

"I told our guys we've been through everything this season, keep your composure down the stretch," said coach Cuonzo Martin, who got his first NCAA win in his third season at Tennessee. "Find ways to win the ball game."

They found an improbable way.

The Vols didn't lead until Antonio Barton's 3-pointer put them up 59-57 with 3:05 left in regulation. There were five lead changes before Tennessee's Jordan McRae missed a jumper at the buzzer, leaving it tied at 64.

Stokes' three-point play was the key moment in his 18-point, 13-rebound performance, putting the Vols ahead to stay. Tennessee's highly ranked defense took it from there, holding Iowa (21-13) to one free throw. The Hawkeyes missed all eight shots from the field in overtime.

It was a tough ending to a long and stressful day for Iowa coach Fran McCaffery. He started the day in Iowa with his teenage son Patrick, who had surgery to remove a thyroid tumor. His assistant coaches led the Hawkeyes through a meeting and their final practice, and McCaffery was back by game time.

19-loss Cal Poly rolls

Now that Cal Poly has gotten its first NCAA victory out of the way, why stop at one?

Chris Eversley scored 19 to help Cal Poly become the first team in 59 years with 19 losses to win an NCAA Tournament game, beating Texas Southern 81-69.

Now the team with the worst record in the tournament (14-19) moves on to face the one with the best — top-seeded Wichita State (34-0) — in the second round in St. Louis on Friday.

It's exactly what Mustangs coach Joe Callero had hoped.

"I'm so weird that I was cheering the last five years that a 16 (seed) never upsets a 1," he said. "Because if we ever got a bid, we'd be a 16 seed and then we'd have a chance to make real history."

They've already done that.

The Mustangs of San Luis Obispo, Calif., were 0-3 and 4-9 early this season. They didn't exactly inspire confidence heading into the Big West tournament, losing nine of 11, but they won the title to earn the program's first NCAA bid.

The only other 19-loss team to win was Bradley (7-19), which won once but lost in the final eight in 1955.

Aaric Murray closed out his career with 38 points for Texas Southern (19-15).

Comments
Veteran 3B Evan Longoria as uncertain as anyone about Rays’ plans

Veteran 3B Evan Longoria as uncertain as anyone about Rays’ plans

LAKE BUENA VISTA — Uncertain with all the talk about potentially rebuilding if the Rays would go as far as trading franchise cornerstone 3B Evan Longoria?So is he."I don’t know what to think, really,’’ Longoria said via text message Sunday night as t...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Veteran trio pacing new-look Bulls

Veteran trio pacing new-look Bulls

Nine games into the Brian Gregory era at USF, the program's short-term trajectory remains difficult to project.Can the Bulls (4-5) finish with a winning record in non-conference play? Can it win at least five conference games for the first time since...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Bucs-Lions journal: Backup lineman was most unlikely of targets

Bucs-Lions journal: Backup lineman was most unlikely of targets

TAMPA — The Bucs’ unlikely comeback to erase a 14-point deficit in the fourth quarter was capped by the most unlikely of targets. Tampa Bay tied the game when Jameis Winston threw a 2-yard pass to 305-pound Leonard Wester, a backup lineman who lined ...
Updated: 1 hour ago

Latest lineNBAFavorite Line O/U Underdog Boston 7½ (200½) at CHI at MEM 1½ (195) Miami at HOU 12 (226½) N.O. at O.C. OFF (OFF) Charlotte at G.S. OFF (OFF) Portland Toronto 5½ (215) at CLIPS NHLFavorite Line Underdog Line at NYR -125 Dallas +115 at PI...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Gerald McCoy leaves game with shoulder/bicep injury

Gerald McCoy leaves game with shoulder/bicep injury

Bucs defensive tackle Gerald McCoy left Sunday's  game against the Lions in the second quarter with an injury to his shoulder/biceps muscle. The team says his return is doubtful.The Bucs were tied 7-7 with the Lions when McCoy was sidelined. He'...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Fennelly: Gerald McCoy’s lost season may be over

Fennelly: Gerald McCoy’s lost season may be over

TAMPA — It was the face of a losing season.Gerald McCoy’s tearful, contorted face.Up there on the video boards at Raymond James Stadium. On your TV screen. Everywhere."I’m not a quitter," McCoy said. "I don’t play to lose."The Bucs lost their ninth g...
Updated: 2 hours ago
Bucs-Lions: Grading Tampa Bay’s 24-21 loss to Detroit

Bucs-Lions: Grading Tampa Bay’s 24-21 loss to Detroit

TAMPA — It was football weather, cool, crisp, a day for the Bucs and their fans. That explains the crowd. Stow the zinc oxide. Where’s my muff?Oh, and break out the record book.For the 28th time in their 42-year history, the Bucs are losers. They sec...
Updated: 2 hours ago
Buc-Lions: The end could be near for Doug Martin

Buc-Lions: The end could be near for Doug Martin

TAMPA — One costly fumble Sunday did what two seasons with the worst average per carry in the NFL couldn’t do: Put Doug Martin on the bench.Bucs coach Dirk Koetter had stuck with Martin, starting him Sunday even after Peyton Barber rushed for 102 yar...
Updated: 2 hours ago
Jones: Why Bucs coach Dirk Koetter won’t survive this

Jones: Why Bucs coach Dirk Koetter won’t survive this

TAMPA — Dirk Koetter isn’t going to return as coach of the Bucs next season.That’s not official. No announcement has been made. No press conference is scheduled. It’s not an absolute fact. Not yet.And this isn’t a call for his job.It’s a prediction. ...
Updated: 2 hours ago
Lions-Buccaneers: A by-the-numbers look at Tampa Bay’s 24-21 loss

Lions-Buccaneers: A by-the-numbers look at Tampa Bay’s 24-21 loss

Here’s a by-the-numbers look at the Bucs’ 24-21 loss to the Lions on Sunday:28Seasons, out of 42, in which the Bucs have lost more games than they’ve won.81.8Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford’s completion percentage Sunday. He completed 36 of 44 pas...
Updated: 2 hours ago