Marcus Foster, Creighton upset No. 3 Villanova
OMAHA, Neb. (AP) Marcus Foster scored 28 points, Davion Mintz gave Creighton the lead for good early in overtime, and the Bluejays defeated the highest-ranked opponent in program history with an 89-83 upset of No. 3 Villanova on Saturday.
Creighton (20-9, 9-7 Big East), playing without injured starting forward Ronnie Harrell Jr., ended a three-game conference losing streak and won for the first time in nine games against Villanova since 2014. The Bluejays also avenged a 20-point road loss to Villanova on Feb. 1.
Villanova (25-4, 12-4) squandered an eight-point lead with 4 minutes left and missed seven of its last nine shots before a meaningless layup at the end of overtime.
Creighton’s Khyri Thomas made five straight 3-pointers in the first 11 minutes to set a career high and finished with 24 points. Ballock added 13 and Epperson had all 12 of his points after halftime.
PITTSBURGH (AP) – Virginia allowed just seven points in the first half against Pittsburgh and secured the regular-season Atlantic Coast Conference title outright.
Freshman guard De’Andre Hunter came off the bench to lead the Cavaliers (26-2, 14-1 ACC) with 14 points in a game that didn’t take big offensive efforts from Virginia’s regulars. Of the five starters, only guard Ty Jerome exceeded his season average with 13 points.
The game was never competitive, as Virginia started on an 8-0 run and Pitt didn’t make a field goal until Jared Wilson-Frame hit a 3-pointer at the midway point of the first half.
Virginia coach Tony Bennett rested most of his regulars in the second half. Reserve Nigel Johnson added 12 points on 4-of-6 shooting.
Parker Stewart led Pitt (8-22, 0-17) with 12 points, all on 3-pointers.
Wendell Carter Jr. added 16 points for the Blue Devils (24-5, 12-4 Atlantic Coast Conference), who forced 17 turnovers. The Orange matched their season-low scoring total, set Feb. 3 in a loss to No. 1 Virginia.
Bagley, the ACC’s leading scorer (21.2 per game) and rebounder (11.4 per game), missed four games after injuring his right knee in a loss at North Carolina on Feb. 8.
Tyus Battle, who ranks third in the league with an average of 20.1 points per game, scored 12 to lead the Orange (18-11, 7-9), who lost their third in four games.
NO. 8 KANSAS 74, NO. 6 TEXAS TECH 72
LUBBOCK, Texas (AP) – Devonte Graham scored 26 points and Kansas set an NCAA record with its 14th straight regular-season conference championship, beating Texas Tech to clinch at least a tie for the Big 12 title.
Graham hit a tiebreaking jumper with 1:30 remaining to help Kansas (23-6, 12-4) to its fourth straight win and a two-game lead over the Red Raiders, who have lost three in a row for the first time this season. The Jayhawks never trailed.
All 14 of the titles have come under coach Bill Self, who finished second in his first season at KU.
The Bulldogs (27-4, 17-1) have won at least a share of 18 of the past 19 regular-season conference championships, including each of the past six seasons.
Zach Norvell Jr. had 15 points and five rebounds for Gonzaga, which got off to a fast start and also played well right after halftime.
Yoeli Childs led BYU (22-9, 11-7) with 19 points and eight rebounds.
GAINESVILLE, Fla. (AP) – KeVaughn Allen bounced back from his first scoreless game in more than three years with 24 points, including two huge 3-pointers in the closing minutes, and Florida beat Auburn.
Auburn’s Jared Harper and Bryce Brown missed off-balance 3-pointers in the final minute, and the Gators closed it out from the charity stripe.
It was Florida’s 11th consecutive win in the series and a huge boost to the team’s NCAA Tournament resume.
The Gators (18-11, 9-7 Southeastern Conference) had dropped three straight and six of eight in league play. The win over the Tigers (24-5, 12-4) could be enough to put Florida in the 68-team field for the second straight season.
NO. 13 WICHITA STATE 84, SMU 78
DALLAS (AP) – Markis McDuffie scored a season-high 26 points off the bench, including nine during the first four minutes of the second half, to lead Wichita State over SMU.
The Shockers (23-5, 13-3 American Athletic Conference) have won six straight games and are one-half game behind first-place Cincinnati. Wichita State will host Cincinnati on March 4 in the regular-season finale for both teams.
SMU (16-13, 6-10) lost for the sixth time in seven games since leading scorer Shake Milton (18 points per game) was sidelined with a hand injury.
Jahmal McMurray led SMU with 28 points.
Miller sat out a day after ESPN reported he was heard on an FBI wiretap discussing a $100,000 payment to current Wildcats freshman Deandre Ayton. The Wildcats also were without guard Allonzo Trier, who tested positive for the same banned substance that cost him 19 games last season.
The school did not specify why Miller didn’t coach against Oregon or if he will sit out any other games.
Ayton had 28 points and 16 rebounds for Arizona (22-7, 12-4 Pac-12), and Rawle Alkins added 24 points.
Oregon (19-10, 9-7) used a stellar performance at the line and a balanced attack to pick up its second straight win. Elijah Brown scored 22 of his season-high 30 points after halftime.
NO. 15 CLEMSON 75, GEORGIA TECH 67
Georgia Tech missed 11 of its last 12 shots and turned the ball over four times in the final seven minutes to lose their seventh straight game and 11th of 12.
The Tigers ended a three-game losing streak, two of them while Mitchell was recovering from a concussion suffered in the final minute at Florida State on Feb. 14.
Using runs of 9-0 and 16-3, the Wolverines built a 54-24 halftime lead and cruised to the finish. Michigan went 17 for 28 from the floor in the first half, including 11 for 19 from 3-point range.
The Wolverines (24-7, 13-5 Big Ten) have clinched the No. 5 seed in the conference tournament, but can earn a No. 4 seed and a double bye if Nebraska loses to Penn State on Sunday.
Anthony Cowan Jr. scored 17 for Maryland (19-12, 8-10), which suffered its most lopsided home loss since a 104-72 defeat against Duke on Jan 3, 1998.
NO. 19 TENNESSEE 73, MISSISSIPPI 65
The Volunteers (21-7, 11-5 SEC) jumped out to a 29-9 lead in the first 10 minutes and held off a rally by Ole Miss in the second half to earn the key road victory.
Neither team shot well from the floor with Tennessee shooting 39 percent and Ole Miss shooting 34 percent.
The Rebels (12-17, 5-11) struggled from long distance. Ole Miss shot 4 percent (1-for-23) from three-point range.
Breein Tyree led the Rebels with 17 points.
NO. 21 WEST VIRGINIA 85, IOWA STATE 70
MORGANTOWN, W.Va. (AP) – Jevon Carter scored 24 points and made some history as West Virginia pulled away to beat Iowa State.
With 15:59 left in the first half, Carter picked up his first assist of the game, setting up a 3-pointer by Esa Ahmad to become the first major-conference player in NCAA history to record more than 1,500 points, 500 rebounds, 500 assists and 300 steals in a career.
Ahmad had 18 points and 11 rebounds for his second career double-double. Sagaba Konate added 14 points along with six blocks, and Daxter Miles scored 14 points for West Virginia (21-8, 10-6 Big 12).
Lindell Wigginton led Iowa State (13-15, 4-12) with 29 points.
NO. 22 SAINT MARY’S 67, SANTA CLARA 40
MORAGA, Calif. (AP) – Jock Landale had 19 points and eight rebounds in his final home game, and Saint Mary’s beat Santa Clara.
The Gaels have won three straight since their school-record 19-game winning streak ended with back-to-back losses.
A matchup of the top two scorers in the WCC fizzled out quickly when Santa Clara’s KJ Feagin limped off the court with a sprained left ankle with 7:16 left in the first half. He did not return.
Henry Caruso had 14 points and seven rebounds for Santa Clara (11-19, 8-10).
NO. 24 MIDDLE TENNESSEE 79, UAB 54
The Blue Raiders (23-5, 15-1 Conference USA) entered the AP poll for the first time on Monday, but hadn’t played since an 87-70 victory at Louisiana Tech last Saturday. They showed no signs of any rust, jumping to a 40-19 halftime lead against the Blazers.
Zack Bryant led UAB (17-12, 8-8) with 13 points.
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