Friday, March 16, 2001

Hampton caps day of upsets, close calls

Only fourth 15th seed to knock off No. 2

The Associated Press

        The NCAA tournament opened Thursday with a series of close calls and upsets, with 15th-seeded Hampton beating second-seeded Iowa State in the biggest surprise of the day.

        Tarvis Williams flipped in a 4-footer in the lane with 6.9 seconds remaining to cap Hampton's stunning 58-57 victory in the West Regional in Boise, Idaho.

        Kent State, Georgia State and Utah State upset Big Ten Conference powers Indiana, Wisconsin and Ohio State, respectively. And high seeds Boston College, Kentucky and Maryland barely escaped.

        At Boise, the Cyclones (25-6), who came within one game of the Final Four last season, left the court in shock as the Pirates (25-6) and their fans swarmed the floor. Hampton's David Johnson carried coach Steve Merfeld halfway around the court as the coach furiously pumped his fists.

        Hampton is the fourth 15th seed to beat a No. 2 since the tournament expanded to 16 seeds per region in 1985. The Pirates, Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference champions, are making their first NCAA tournament appearance.

        “It was a great win. I thought our kids persevered,” Merfeld said. “They took control of the game, but we just hung in there and hung in there.”

        The Cyclones were outscored 14-2 in the final eight minutes, getting nothing after Martin Rancik's bucket gave Iowa State a 57-48 lead with 7:01 remaining.

        “It's just devastating to go out like this,” guard Kantrail Horton said.

        Iowa State's Jamaal Tinsley took the ball downcourt but missed a layup with 1.2 seconds to go.

        “I saw we had 6.9 seconds left on the clock and I told our guys to foul as they were running down the court because we had a foul to give,” Merfeld said. “They didn't hear me, thank God.”

        Georgia State, led by former Maryland coach Lefty Driesell, knocked off the sixth-seeded Badgers 50-49 earlier in Boise to set up a second-round showdown with the Terrapins.

        “I told my team this might be the greatest win I've ever had,” said Driesell, fired by Maryland 15 years ago. “We came back in the second half and showed what kind of club we have.”

        Georgia State's Darryl Cooper made a four-point play and a steal to set up the game-winning basket in the final minute. The win wasn't sealed until Wisconsin's Mark Vershaw missed two free throws with 3.2 seconds to play.

        Kevin Morris led Georgia State (29-4) with 18 points. Mark Vershaw had 19 for Wisconsin (18-11), which played in the Final Four last year.

        Maryland, seeded third, squeaked by George Mason 83-80. The Terrapins (22-10) needed Steve Blake's late 3-pointer and Juan Dixon's two free throws with 4.9 seconds left.


        Boston College 68, S. Utah 65

        Troy Bell scored 16 of his 18 points in the second half as Boston College survived a scare against 14th-seeded Southern Utah.

        Xavier Singletary added 15 points to help Boston College (27-4) to its eighth straight victory.

        Jeff Monaco scored 26 points for the Thunderbirds (25-6). Southern Utah had a chance to tie it at the buzzer, but Justin Sant's 3-point attempt hit the front of the rim.

        Utah St. 77, Ohio St. 68, OT

        Curtis Bobb scored eight of his 14 points in overtime as Utah State won its first NCAA tournament game since 1970.

        Bernard Rock scored 18 points and Tony Brown 17 for the 12th-seeded Aggies (28-5), who had lost nine straight tournament games.

        Ken Johnson led the Buckeyes (20-11) with 14 points, 14 rebounds and five blocks.

        Kentucky 72, Holy Cross 68

        Consecutive 3-pointers by Tayshaun Prince broke a second-half tie as Kentucky held off Holy Cross.

        Prince made two 3-pointers inside of a minute to put the Wildcats in front, and scored 12 of his team's final 14 points.

        Prince finished with 27 points, and Keith Bogans added 17 for Kentucky (23-9). Jared Curry led Holy Cross (22-8) with 16 points.

        Iowa 69, Creighton 56

        Reggie Evans scored 16 of his 19 points in the second half to help Iowa (23-11) post its fifth straight victory.

        Evans was 13-of-15 from the foul line, including 12-of-13 in the final 10 minutes. Duez Henderson added 16 points and Dean Oliver had 15. Ben Walker and Livan Pyfrom scored 11 points apiece for Creighton (24-8).

        Southern Cal 69, Oklahoma St. 54

        Sam Clancy had 22 points and 13 rebounds, and Jeff Trepagnier added 17 points for Southern California

        The Trojans (22-9) led 48-19 at the half. The Cowboys (20-10) made just nine of 26 shots and missed nine of 10 free throws in the opening 20 minutes.

        UCLA 61, Hofstra 48

        UCLA (22-8) closed with a 24-5 run to snap the nation's longest Division I winning streak at 18 games.

        Earl Watson scored 13 of his 15 points for the Bruins in the first half. Dan Gadzuric came up big late, scoring eight of his 14 points during the final run. He also added 13 rebounds, while Billy Knight led the Bruins with 17 points.

        Rick Apodaca led the Pride (26-5) with 16 points.

        Duke 95, Monmouth 52

        Jason Williams scored 20 of his 22 points in the first half, and Shane Battier added 21 points and 10 rebounds.

        Duke (30-4) tied a school record with 18 3-pointers to help coach Mike Krzyzewski improve to 51-14 in the NCAA tournament. Rahsaan Johnson had 11 points for Monmouth (21-10).

        Missouri 70, Georgia 68

        Clarence Gilbert hit a 15-foot jumper with 0.9 seconds to play as Missouri held off a furious Georgia rally.

        Georgia overcame an 11-point deficit with just over two minutes to play to tie it on Rashad Wright's 3-pointer with 22 seconds left.

        Arthur Johnson led Missouri (20-12) with 15 points. Robb Dryden led Georgia (16-15) with a season-high 18 points.


        Georgetown 63, Arkansas 61

        Georgetown's Nathaniel Burton hit a driving layup at the buzzer that survived an official's instant-replay review.

        With the score tied at 61, Georgetown took possession with 35.8 seconds left. The Hoyas ran down the 35-second clock, with Burton holding the ball until there were only a few seconds to play.

        He began his drive down the left side of the lane and flipped up a shot almost simultaneous with the shot-clock horn. After about a minute, an announcement was made that the basket counted.

        Kevin Braswell led the 10th-seeded Hoyas (24-7) with 12 points. Joe Johnson scored 14 points for Arkansas (20-11).

        St. Joseph's 66, Georgia Tech 62

        Marvin O'Connor scored 13 of his 21 points in the second half for St. Joseph's, the second-smallest school in the tournament with 3,450 students.

        St. Joe's (26-6) saw its 18-point lead dwindle to three twice in the final 1:43. But the Yellow Jackets (17-13) came up short on two easy scoring chances. Tony Akins led Tech with 16 points.

        Stanford 89, N.C. Greensboro 60

        Seven-footer Jason Collins scored 25 points, 20 in the first half, as top-seeded Stanford built a 23-point lead.

        Sophomore All-American Casey Jacobsen added 14 points, giving him 1,003 for his career.

        Stanford (29-2) won its opening game for the seventh straight year. The 29-point margin was the biggest for the Cardinal in the NCAA tournament. Greensboro finished 19-12.

        Kent St. 77, Indiana 73

        Trevor Huffman scored 24 points, including 11 of Kent State's last 15, as the Golden Flashes (24-9) sent Indiana to its second straight first-round loss and fifth in seven years.

        Kirk Haston scored 29 points for the Hoosiers (21-4), whose No. 4 seed was their highest since 1993.

        Cincinnati 84, Brigham Young 59

        Steve Logan scored 21 points and fifth-seeded Cincinnati (24-9) opened the second half with a 19-4 run.

        It was the Bearcats' seventh straight first-round win and gave coach Bob Huggins his 300th victory in 12 seasons at Cincinnati. Mekeli Wesley had 25 points for BYU (24-9).

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