Wednesday, January 17, 2018
Sports

Harvard pulls upset for second year

SPOKANE, Wash. — Those kids from Harvard are getting a passing grade when it comes to the first game of the NCAA Tournament.

Ask New Mexico last year. Ask Cincinnati now.

"I've heard this before where there really aren't upsets anymore," Harvard coach Tommy Amaker said. "There may be some surprises, but I just think when you're looking at seeds and if you're playing this time of year, you're probably a pretty good basketball team."

Siyani Chambers scored 11, including five straight in the final two minutes, and 12th-seeded Harvard won its second NCAA Tournament game in history, upsetting fifth seed Cincinnati 61-57 Thursday.

Wesley Saunders led the Crimson (27-4) with 12 points as Harvard proved last year's upset of New Mexico as a 14 seed was no fluke. The last Ivy League school with NCAA Tournament wins in consecutive years was Princeton in 1983-84.

Sean Kilpatrick led Cincinnati (27-7) with 18 points.

"Today's game was anything but an upset," Bearcats coach Mick Cronin said. "They've got a great team. Tough draw for us. They're one of the best teams we played all year."

Justin Jackson finished with 13 points and 11 rebounds, but the Bearcats shot only 37 percent and missed a number of shots around the rim.

"I missed a lot of opportunities around the rim," Jackson said.

michigan st. 93, delaware 78: Adreian Payne scored a career-high 41 as the fourth-seeded Spartans (27-8) rolled past the 13th-seeded Blue Hens (25-10) in Spokane, Wash.

Payne scored 12 straight in the first half as Michigan State took an 18-point lead.

He set an NCAA Tournament record by making all 17 of his free throws and broke the program's tournament scoring record, set by Greg Kelser in 1979. Payne is the first to crack 40 in a March Madness game since Stephen Curry for Davidson in 2008 against Gonzaga.

"When you're scoring like that and the game's coming so easy to you … it feels like you can't be stopped," said Payne, whose previous career high was 33.

Coach Tom Izzo wasn't completely happy with the victory. Michigan State committed a 27 fouls, with every starter in foul trouble of varying degrees.

"I'd have to blame a lot more on us," Izzo said. "I can only say I'm not a fan of the (hand-checking emphasis), but I wasn't a fan of how we played."

"They were up to the challenge," Delaware coach Monte' Ross said of the Spartans.

UConn 89, St. Joseph's 81, OT: Shabazz Napier shook off a miss at the second-half buzzer to score nine of his 24 in overtime and lead the seventh-seeded Huskies (27-8) past the 10th-seeded Hawks (24-10) in Buffalo, N.Y.

DeAndre Daniels scored 18 while freshman center Amida Brimah forced overtime by completing a three-point play in the final minute for UConn. Napier missed a running 3-pointer as time expired in regulation.

The Huskies won their first tournament game under coach Kevin Ollie, who took over two years ago after Jim Calhoun stepped down.

With the score tied at 70 entering overtime, Daniels opened the scoring by completing a three-point play with 3:47 left.

"That's why I came to the University of Connecticut to play in these tournaments, to give myself and my team a chance to hoist that trophy at the end of the day," Napier said.

Langston Galloway scored 25 points for St. Joseph's. The Hawks had a three-point lead with 49 seconds left in regulation but came up just short of their first NCAA win since 2004.

'nova 73, milwaukee 53: Darrun Hilliard scored 16, JayVaughn Pinkston added 13 and the second-seeded Wildcats (29-4) pulled away. The No. 15 seed Panthers (21-14), the surprise champion of the Horizon League, made it a game most of the way, leading much of the first half before fading late. A 12-point run spanning halftime gave Villanova a nine-point lead early in the second half, and Hilliard's long 3-pointer with 8:10 left made it 53-42.

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