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McDermott gets some help in Creighton's win

SAN ANTONIO, Texas — Doug McDermott and Ethan Wragge kept Creighton marching.

McDermott scored 30 and Wragge made three momentum-changing 3-pointers during the second half, sending third-seeded Creighton to a 76-66 win over 14th-seeded Louisiana-Lafayette on Friday.

The Bluejays (27-7) advanced to the third round, where they have lost the past two years.

"It feels great to be back," McDermott, a senior, said. "This is what I came back for."

McDermott had a double double by halftime but went scoreless for nearly 14 minutes of the second half. Elfrid Payton, who scored 24 for the Ragin' Cajuns (23-12) took the lead in defending him. And Lafayette led 50-48 before Wragge sparked Creighton's late push.

"Coming into the game, we felt like it was in reach," Payton said. "From the opening tip, we got on a good run. I think I did a good job of keeping him uncomfortable."

McDermott finally sealed the win with a long 3-pointer with 2:03 to play that made it 71-64.

"We got away with one," he said. "We have a veteran team and showed that down the stretch."

Ariz. 68, Weber St. 59: Anxious early and a bit too comfortable late, top-seeded Arizona (31-4), led by Nick Johnson's 18 points and Aaron Gordon's 16, pulled out the win in San Diego.

"We are fortunate to advance," coach Sean Miller said. "One of my hopes is (having) one of these under our belts, we will be more ourselves and better on Sunday."

Arizona trailed by eight six minutes in before two big first-half runs. But 16th-seeded Weber State (19-12) trimmed a 21-point deficit to just nine in the closing minutes.

"We came in expecting to win," coach Randy Rahe said. "The guys did a tremendous job. I thought we could have pulled in the tents, and our guys got a little more tough and showed resilience like they have all year."

Baylor 74, Nebraska 60: Cory Jefferson scored 16 for the sixth-seeded Bears (25-11) in San Antonio. Baylor, which has won 11 of 13 since starting the Big 12 season 2-8, didn't make the tournament last year after reaching the Elite Eight in 2010 and 2012.

"The past Elite Eights … were good runs," said Jefferson, a senior who was on both Elite Eight teams. "But this year, we're just looking at it as checking it one game at a time."

The 11th-seeded Cornhuskers (19-13) missed nine of their first 10 shots and labored through a nine-minute scoring drought.

And coach Tim Miles was ejected with 11 minutes left for his second technical foul. The first came when Terran Petteway, the Big Ten's leading scorer, picked up his fourth foul after Nebraska cut its deficit to single digits. Two minutes later, Miles charged toward the scorer's table. He said afterward he tried to tell the officials the shot clock hadn't started.

"I just wanted them to stop the game," he said. "It had nothing to do with the officiating."

But Miles didn't make excuses: "Officiating is not what did us in."

Gonzaga 85, Okla. St. 77: Kevin Pangos scored 26 for the eighth-seeded Bulldogs in San Diego. His 3-pointer put Gonzaga (29-6) up 10 with 7:46 left, and he went 10-for-10 from the free-thrown line over the last 1:31. The officials called 61 fouls, and five players fouled out.

"We knew it wasn't going to be pretty," Gonzaga coach Mark Few said. "We knew we were going to have to fight."

Marcus Smart had 23 points, 13 rebounds, seven assists and six steals for the ninth-seeded Cowboys (21-13). They entered 5-1 since he returned from a three-game ban for shoving a fan.

"They answered every run we made with big plays," Cowboys coach Travis Ford said. "We threw a few punches in the second half, and we said to our guys, 'Let's get aggressive. Let's get after it.' "

McDermott gets some help in Creighton's win 03/21/14 [Last modified: Friday, March 21, 2014 10:59pm]
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