Sunday, March 16, 2003

College basketball today



By The Associated Press

STARS

• Julius Hodge, North Carolina State, scored a career-high 31 points to help the Wolfpack upset No. 9 Wake Forest 87-83 in the ACC tournament semifinals.

• Timmy Bowers, Mississippi State, scored 26 points and shot 6-of-9 from 3-point range to lead the Bulldogs to a 76-61 win over LSU in the SEC tournament semifinals.

• Sean Finn, Dayton, scored a career-high 20 points as No. 22 Dayton beat Temple 79-72 for its first Atlantic 10 tournament title.

FIRST TIMERS

David Hehn hit a 10-foot jumper with 5.6 seconds left to give Vermont a 56-55 win over Boston University in the America East finals and its first NCAA tournament bid.

OTHER TICKETS PUNCHED

No. 20 Louisville beat Alabama-Birmingham 83-78 for the Conference USA tournament championship. ... South Carolina State rallied to end Hampton's two-year reign as the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference tournament champion with a 72-67 win. ... No. 22 Dayton beat Temple 79-72 to win the Atlantic 10 tournament. ... Fifth-seeded Oregon became the lowest seed to win the Pac-10 tournament when the Ducks knocked off USC 74-66. ... Texas Southern defeated Alcorn State 77-68 to win the Southwestern Athletic Conference tournament. ... Central Michigan beat Kent State 77-68 to win the Mid-American Conference tournament.

SWING

In the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference championship game, top-seeded South Carolina State trailed 26-6 after just 7:26 and had nine turnovers in the first 10 minutes. The Bulldogs cleaned up their play and went on to defeat Hampton 72-67.

CHARITY STRIPE

Charles Bass made the first free throw of his career with 6.1 seconds left as Ohio State beat Michigan State 55-54 in the semifinals of the Big Ten tournament. The freshman had never even gone to the free-throw line before, but he banked his first shot off the glass. Bass missed the second shot, but the Spartans' shot at the buzzer failed. ... Brian Cook hit two free throws with 5.2 seconds left as No. 13 Illinois held off Indiana 73-72 in the Big Ten semifinals.

TOURNEY TOUGH

Louisville coach Rick Pitino's teams have won 21 of their last 23 games in league tournaments, including Saturday's 83-78 win in the Conference USA championship game. Pitino went 17-1 in the Southeastern Conference tournament when he was at Kentucky from 1989-97.

COACHING 100s

Mississippi State coach Rick Stansbury earned his 100th win when the Bulldogs defeated LSU 76-61 in the semifinals of the Southeastern Conference tournament. ... Kansas coach Roy Williams lost his 100th game when his fourth-ranked Jayhawks fell to Missouri 68-63 in the Big 12 tournament semifinals. Williams has won 413 games in his 15 seasons with the Jayhawks.

UNFAMILIAR PLACE

Auburn and No. 2 Kentucky were tied at 36 at halftime of SEC semifinals - the first game in more than two months that the Wildcats were not leading at the break. Kentucky outscored Auburn 42-22 in the second half, winning its 22nd straight game 78-58.

STREAKING DEVILS

Duke took another step toward an unprecedented fifth straight Atlantic Coast Conference tournament title by beating North Carolina 75-63 in the semifinals. No program has won more than three straight ACC titles in the league's first 49 years other than Duke, which last lost in the 1998 championship game to North Carolina.

FLYING AT HOME

No. 22 Dayton completed a 17-1 run at home with a 79-72 win over Temple in the final of the Atlantic 10 Conference tournament, which was played at UD Arena. The Flyers earned their first NCAA tournament bid since 2000.

MASSIMINO QUITS

Rollie Massimino resigned after seven seasons at Cleveland State. His tenure in Cleveland ended with his first 20-loss season in 30 years of coaching. Massimino's team went 8-22 this season and finished last in the nine-team Horizon League. Massimino is best known for coaching Villanova to the 1985 NCAA title.

SPEAKING

"I went to say something to the referee and Charles told me, 'Don't worry about it, I got it.' The way he said it, he had a lot of confidence in his voice. So I stepped away from him and said, 'Do your thing."' - Brent Darby, Ohio State's leading scorer, on the words exchanged between him and freshman Charles Bass, who banked in the ensuing foul shot with 6 seconds left to give Ohio State a 55-54 win over Michigan State in the Big Ten semifinals.




REDS / BASEBALL
Injuries slow down RHP Wilson
Bottom of the 9th, but the big job's done
Reds 6, Twins 1
Hamilton grateful, now a Cardinal
Dempster keeps coming up aces
Reds Q&A
Reality bites players bound for minors
Cardinals expecting to be grand in Central
Robinson: Minorities have a long way to go
Trammell asks Sparky for guidance
A's say they won't re-sign Tejada

BENGALS / NFL
Daugherty: Bengals' perception
Bengals Q&A
Douglas will make impact on Jaguars

COLLEGE BASKETBALL
UC confident bid will come
Good seeding likely for XU
XU rifle team 2nd
Kentucky thumps Auburn
Daniels' scary fall gives fans pause
SEC: Mississippi State 76, LSU 61
This is how to win your office pool
College basketball today
Teams can get Dance Card punched here
Atlantic 10: Dayton stops Temple
Big East: Pitt wins title
Big 10: Illinois withstands Coverdale's heroics
C-USA: Cardinals win first title
MAC: Central Michigan blows past Kent
Top 25: Missouri exacts revenge on No. 4 Kansas
Tournaments at a glance

PREP SPORTS
Spartans' repeat hopes fizzle
Moeller turns Hamilton blue
Regina easily wins fourth straight title
Prep Insider: State titles on the line

GOLF
Love in control at Honda
Greater depth on PGA Tour astounds veterans

HOCKEY
AHL Ducks set playoff roster

HORSE RACING
Empire Maker takes Florida Derby by record margin

NBA
Hawks' bench packs powerful 1-2 punch
Kemp overcame demons to salvage career
Stackhouse may test the market
Wizards turn up defensive heat to douse Miami

COLLEGE SPORTS
Baseball: Xavier overcomes its early struggles

PAGE TWO
Back by popular demand
Enquirer Page Two Power rankings

PLAN YOUR DAY
This weekend's sports on TV, radio