Ivy Leaguer outsmarts scammer at NCAA tourney

Don’t try scamming an Ivy League student, especially one who can run you down once he figures out the ruse.

A 20-year-old Columbia University track athlete duped into buying two bogus tickets for NCAA tournament games over the weekend at Madison Square Garden chased down the con man and caught him after nearly 20 blocks, The New York Post reported.

The unidentified student, a finance major who answered a Craigslist ad, thought he was getting two tickets for $210 apiece — far below the going rate for the Sweet 16 doubleheader. After meeting up with the seller to make the deal, the student and his friend were turned away at the arena gate when the ticket-taker scanned the tickets and determined they were fake.

But the student and his friend were quick thinkers. They still had the scammer’s phone number, so they called back and pretended they needed two more more tickets. When the alleged crook arrived at a meeting place, the student demanded his money back.

The seller reached into his pocket as if he was retrieving the money but then turned tail and ran. A 39-year-old man helped pursue and subdue the con man along West 50th Street, about 17 blocks from Madison Square Garden, until police arrived.

"I was running after him screaming, ‘Help! Help!’" the student told the paper. "He was much bigger than me. But I got him."

Police charged Lionel Moye, 23, with possession of a forged instrument plus assault for allegedly biting the man who helped the student apprehend him, police said.