Men's College Basketball
NCAAB News Wire
  • No. 10 Creighton faces in-state challenge from Nebraska
    By The Sports Xchange / Tuesday, December 6, 2016

    Creighton is set for its first true road game Wednesday, but the Bluejays don't have to stray far from home for their initial challenge in a hostile environment.

    • The 10th-ranked Bluejays will travel just under 60 miles west on Interstate 80 to play in-state rival Nebraska at Pinnacle Bank Arena in Lincoln.

      It is the first time in program history that Creighton is a Top 10 team in either poll in consecutive weeks. The Bluejays (8-0) remained No. 10 in the Associated Press poll while moving from No. 12 to No. 10 in the USA Today coaches poll Monday.

      The annual showdown for bragging rights has been lopsided in Creighton's favor in recent seasons, and Bluejays coach Greg McDermott has never lost a game to a Tim Miles-coached team.

      Bluejays guard Khyri Thomas, a sophomore from Omaha, said the Creighton coaches are more into the rivalry aspect than he is.

      "Now that I'm at Creighton, it's starting to become a big deal," Thomas said. "Last year I got a little taste of it, but this year we're going there. The coaches are always amped up about it, so I guess I have to get amped up as well.

      "It's just another game. I'm ready to play, get the win and on to the next game."

      While the Bluejays played three games away from CenturyLink Center, all of those were at a neutral site in the Virgin Islands. McDermott expects to know much more about the Jays by the time the game ends late Wednesday night.

      "I wish we would have had one other true road game before to get out feet wet, but we're going to go into the fire right away," McDermott said. "I'm going to learn a lot about our team on Wednesday, whether we can go into an environment like that, where it's loud and there are plenty of distractions because of the energy and the crowd. We have to be able to focus our way through it."

      Nebraska (5-3) took an 11-point loss to No. 2 UCLA at Pauley Pavilion and a two-point setback to Clemson in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge. McDermott said Miles has the Huskers on the right track.

      "He's got them playing well," McDermott said. "They've got a couple of near-misses against some really good teams."

      Two Huskers specifically mentioned by McDermott as having good starts to the season were Glynn Watson Jr. and Tai Webster. Those pair are averaging a combined 30.7 points per game, with Webster setting the pace at 16.9.

      How the two teams get things done on offense and defense are vastly different. Creighton is the only team in the country that is shooting better than 50 percent from the field in all its games, and the Bluejays average 90.2 points per game.

      The Huskers are making shots at a clip of 42.5 percent through their first eight games while averaging 69.1 points per outing. Nebraska is giving up 62.5 points per game, while Creighton surrenders 73.9 each time out.

      McDermott said the Huskers aren't a team the Bluejays can take lightly. He noted that none of Creighton's current starters have played in the rivalry game in Lincoln.

      "They're playing with a lot more confidence," McDermott said. "Nebraska's a very capable basketball team, and we're going to have to have our 'A' game if we going to go in there and expect to win."

      The Wednesday contest begins a rough week for Nebraska, which plays at No. 3 Kansas on Saturday.

      "It's a big week for us to come prepared and play our game and execute what Coach Miles wants us to do," Watson told huskers.com. "It's big. It's a chance for us to show our game and show that we can play with the best teams, also. It's big, but we've got to prepare and execute whatever we've got to do to get the W."

  • Top 25 roundup: No. 5 Duke takes down No. 21 Florida
    By The Sports Xchange / Tuesday, December 6, 2016

    NEW YORK -- Luke Kennard poured in 29 points, Amile Jefferson scored a career-high 24 points and freshman sensation Jayson Tatum added 22 to lead No. 5 Duke to an 84-74 victory over No. 21 Florida in the Jimmy V Classic on Tuesday at Madison Square Garden.

    • Jefferson added 15 rebounds for his fifth double-double of the season and Grayson Allen recorded a career-high eight assists for Duke (9-1).

      Tatum, playing in second game for Duke (9-1), contributed eight rebounds. He had been out with a sprained ankle he suffered in the preseason. Tatum was 8 of 8 from the line and 7 of 11 from the floor.

      KeVaughn Allen led Florida (7-2) with 21 points and Kasey Hill chipped in with 13 points and seven rebounds.

      Duke's only loss this season was a 77-75 decision to Kansas at Madison Square Garden on Nov. 15.

      No. 1 Villanova 89, La Salle 79

      PHILADELPHIA -- Jalen Brunson scored 26 points, Josh Hart added 21 points and eight rebounds and the Wildcats defeated the Explorers for their 17th consecutive Big 5 victory.

      Mikal Bridges also scored 16 points and Kris Jenkins had 12 for Villanova (9-0), which played its first game as the top-ranked team in the country. The Wildcats were elevated to the top spot Monday after beating Saint Joseph's and having previous No. 1 Kentucky lose to UCLA.

      La Salle (4-3) was paced by Pookie Powell with 27 points while B.J. Johnson added 13. Tony Washington also had 10 as the Explorers had their three-game winning streak snapped.

      No. 3 Kansas 105, Missouri-Kansas City 62

      LAWRENCE, Kan. -- Frank Mason scored 27 points in the first 27 minutes and eventually tied his career high with 30 as the Jayhawks overwhelmed the Kangaroos, giving coach Bill Self his 600th career victory.

      Kansas canned 15 treys as a team, one short of the school record, while going 15 of 27 from that range.

      Josh Jackson added his second double-double with 19 points and 12 rebounds as the Jayhawks (8-1) won their eighth straight game since a season-opening overtime loss to Indiana.

      UMKC (6-4), which lost its second straight after getting off to its best start in 15 seasons, was led by senior guard LaVell Boyd with 17 points.

      No. 14 Virginia 76, East Carolina 53

      CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. -- After dropping their first home game in nearly two years Saturday, the Cavaliers rebounded with a thrashing of the Pirates.

      Virginia (8-1) led for all but four minutes as it shot 56.6 percent for the game and knocked down nine 3-pointers.

      Kyle Guy led the Cavaliers with 13 points. London Perrantes, Marial Shayok and Mamadi Diakite each finished with 12 points.

      East Carolina (7-3) got a game-high 17 points from Jeremy Sheppard. B.J. Tyson added 10, but was limited to two in the second half.

      No. 18 Purdue 97, Arizona State 64

      NEW YORK -- For the second straight game, Purdue used its long-range shooting to overwhelm an opponent.

      The Boilermakers hit 15 of 27 3-pointers to knock off the Sun Devils in the first game of the Jimmy V Classic at Madison Square Garden.

      Purdue also connected for 15 treys in a 90-56 victory over Morehead State on Saturday. Isaac Hayes and Vincent Edwards led the Boilermakers with 16 points apiece. Ryan Cline added 15 points and was 5 of 7 from beyond the arc.

      Shannon Evans II scored 16 points for Arizona State (5-4), which shot 35.8 percent.

      No. 20 Arizona 79, UC Irvine 57

      TEMPE, Ariz. -- Lauri Markkanen scored 18 points, and Dusan Ristic recorded the second double-double of his career as the Wildcats routed the Anteaters.

      Ristic also finished with 18 points to go with 10 rebounds. He made 8 of 11 shots from the field, scoring 14 points before halftime.

      Rawle Alkins filled the box score with 14 points, seven rebounds and six assists for Arizona (7-2).

      UC Irvine (4-5) made only 4 of 20 shots from 3-point range. Guard Jaron Martin led the Anteaters with 12 points, and Max Hazzard added 10.

      The Wildcats played their second game without starting point guard Parker Jackson-Cartwright, who is expected to be out about eight weeks because of a high ankle sprain.

      No. 23 Notre Dame 87, Fort Wayne 72

      SOUTH BEND, Ind. -- Bonzie Colson recorded his sixth straight double-double with 17 points and 14 rebounds as the Fighting Irish moved to 9-0 with a victory over the Mastadons.

      Steve Vasturia led Notre Dame with 21 points.

      Mo Evans led Fort Wayne (7-3) with 25 points. The Mastadons got as close as nine in a second half after the Fighting Irish led by as 27 points earlier in the half.

      Notre Dame is off to its best start in the 17-year tenure of coach Mike Brey and its best start since opening 12-0 in 1973-74 under former coach Digger Phelps, who was in his usual baseline seat for this one.

  • Board battle looms for No. 13 Xavier at Colorado
    By The Sports Xchange / Tuesday, December 6, 2016

    The Colorado Buffaloes have strived to become relevant on the national stage since Tad Boyle became coach six years ago.

    • They have a great chance to become part of the conversation when they host No. 13 Xavier at the Coors Events Center on Wednesday at Boulder, Colo.

      The Musketeers (7-1) are Colorado's second ranked opponent on its non-conference schedule, and a win Wednesday would give it a sweep of those teams.

      The Buffaloes beat Texas, then No. 22, 68-54 in the consolation game of The Legends Classic in Brooklyn, N.Y., on Nov. 22. The Musketeers give them another chance at a resume win as the teams start a home-and-home series, with next year's matchup set for Cincinnati.

      "When I think of Xavier basketball, the first thing that comes to my mind is the toughness. They've got great toughness," Boyle told the Boulder Daily Camera. "They've got really good players and they're very well coached. Xavier doesn't beat themselves, you have to go beat them. We have to be ready for a street fight."

      Both teams are trying to put disappointing losses behind. Colorado (6-2) lost to in-state rival Colorado State last week to snap a 12-game home winning streak but bounced back to beat Portland 76-63.

      Xavier dropped its only true road game at No. 4 Baylor.

      The Musketeers played arguably their best half of basketball when they took a 34-31 lead at intermission against the Bears. They followed that up with a bad second half and lost 76-61.

      Turnovers were an issue in that game, and coach Chris Mack told the Cincinnati Enquirer that he talked to his players about the missed opportunity in Waco, Texas.

      "I'm sure (the players) felt some positives. I didn't necessarily show them a lot of the positives," Mack told the Enquirer. "I think everybody in the world always wants to give the sugar-coated version. I gave our guys reality, and that was what we got away from in the second half really hurt us and we didn't have an ability to stop the momentum. We didn't have an ability to take good shots and to turn the ball over. We've got to do that at Colorado."

      The Musketeers are led in scoring by junior guard Trevon Bluiett, who is averaging 18.4 points a game. He and RaShid Gaston, lead Xavier in rebounding at 6.3 rebounds a game. Xavier has three players averaging at least 15 points.

      It will be a tough task to beat Colorado on the glass. The Buffaloes outrebound opponents by nine a game and are third in the Pac-12 in rebounding margin. They are led by Xavier Johnson, who is averaging a team-best 14.4 points and 6.3 rebounds.

      Senior Derrick White is Colorado's do-all player, averaging 14 points, 4.0 rebounds and 3.5 assists per game.

      "(Colorado is) a team that really takes a lot of pride on the offensive glass," Mack told the Enquirer. "They might be one of the best offensive rebounding teams we've faced all year."

      The Buffaloes are facing a team that crashes the boards. Xavier is also outrebounding opponents by nine per game and ranks 12th nationally in rebounding margin at 10.6.

      It comes down to strength against strength, and Colorado is hoping its home court will be a difference maker.

      "It's going to be a heck of a challenge," Boyle told the Daily Camera. "Nothing against Portland, but this is a little different animal than the Portland Pilots in terms of their personnel. Portland is well-coached. Xavier is well-coached and they've got some dudes who can rip your head off if you're not ready to play."

  • By The Sports Xchange / Tuesday, December 6, 2016

    TERRE HAUTE, Ind. -- Butler University coach Chris Holtmann figures his team is in line for an extremely difficult road test against in-state rival Indiana State.

    • "I really like Indiana State's team," Holtmann said. "It was a real good challenge for us (at home) last year. They're physical. They're tough. They have older guys. They have some dynamic guards. They've got some talent and the Missouri Valley is a heck of a league."

      The No. 16 Bulldogs (8-0) will visit Indiana State (4-4) at 7 p.m. ET Wednesday at Hulman Center.

      "We'll need to be better than what we were on the road (last week against Utah) to give ourselves a chance," Holtmann said. "I really believe that. I'm excited about our guys are going on the road in that environment. I think our players are excited about it, too, because we know it's going to be a tremendous challenge. That's a good thing for this group, regardless of what happens."

      Butler has played more games with Indiana State than any other opponent, with the series dating to 1903. The Bulldogs hold a 70-56 series edge, winning the past four games, including 85-71 last season.

      Holtmann wasn't pleased with his team's approach and first-half play in Saturday's 82-58 victory over visiting Central Arkansas.

      "We have to be more focused on the defensive end in practice," junior forward Kelan Martin said. "We have to play together. It wasn't our best game (against Central Arkansas) We have tough teams the rest of the schedule so we have to ratchet it up in practice. We have to be connected together and we'll be fine."

      Martin, who scored a season-high 30 points against Central Arkansas, is averaging a team-high 18.1 points per game.

      "We have a lot of scorers on the team so I don't have to do all the scoring," Martin said. "I can look for Avery (Woodson) or anybody else."

      This is Butler's best start since also starting the 2008-09 season at 8-0.

      Sycamores coach Greg Lansing has major concerns about Butler's prowess on both ends of the floor.

      "They're such a good defensive team that they take it from you," Lansing said. "They get steals. They're so active. They're well put together on that end. So they get some easy baskets off their defense so that always helps. On the half-court, their field goal percentage is 10 percentage points better than the teams they are playing. At one end, they are getting better shots than they are giving up on the other end.

      "They're the best team we've played so far. What they've done so far on the season is very impressive."

      Butler is shooting 50.2 percent from the field while its opponents are shooting 40.9 percent.

      Indiana State has won two consecutive games, topping visiting Northern Illinois 63-52 and edging host Utah State 62-61.

      Sycamores junior Brenton Scott averages a team-high 19.1 points per game.

  • Defending champion Villanova returns to No. 1
    By The Sports Xchange / Monday, December 5, 2016

    Defending NCAA champion Villanova took over the top spot in the Associated Press men's college basketball poll released Monday.

    • The Wildcats had their path to No. 1 cleared by UCLA, which vaulted nine spots to No. 2 after knocking off previously unbeaten and then top-ranked Kentucky on Saturday.

      Villanova (8-0) received 57 first-place votes from the 65-member national media panel following a pair of lopsided victories over Big 5 rivals Pennsylvania and St. Joseph's.

      UCLA (9-0) made a dramatic leap from No. 11 after dispatching Kentucky 97-92 to leapfrog, among others, No. 3 Kansas (7-1), which has won seven in a row following a season-opening loss.

      Baylor (8-0) jumped up five slots to No. 4 and received the remaining six first-place votes after handing Xavier its first defeat, dropping the Musketeers from seventh to 13th.

      Duke (8-1) rounded out the top five and was followed by Kentucky (7-1), North Carolina (8-1), Gonzaga (8-0), Indiana (7-1) and Creighton (8-0).

      Louisville (7-1) moved up to No. 11 and Saint Mary's (6-0) held steady at No. 12 ahead of Xavier and Virginia (7-1), which plummeted eight spots to No. 14 after a loss to neighboring West Virginia (6-1), an upset that propelled the Mountaineers up 10 notches to No. 15.

      Cincinnati (7-1) and Notre Dame (8-0) moved into the rankings at Nos. 22 and 23, respectively, while Rhode Island and Syracuse tumbled out of the poll.

  • Top 25 roundup: No. 3 Tar Heels rout Radford
    By The Sports Xchange / Sunday, December 4, 2016

    CHAPEL HILL, N.C. -- Sophomore guard Kenny Williams scored a career-high 19 points as No. 3 North Carolina blew out Radford 95-50 Sunday.

    • The Tar Heels cruised from the start just four days after their lone loss of the season at Indiana.

      The disturbing part for North Carolina came when standout guard Joel Berry tumbled to the court with 17:36 remaining. He hobbled to the locker room with what was later revealed as a sprained left ankle. Berry didn't return to action. He finished with five points after entering the game averaging 16 points per game.

      Kennedy Meeks had 13 points, Isaiah Hicks chipped in 12 points and Tony Bradley had 10 points and 11 rebounds for North Carolina (8-1). Justin Cousin scored 14 points and Christian Bradford tallied 13 points for Radford (3-5).

      No. 13 Indiana 83, Southeast Missouri State 55

      BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- Hoosiers sophomore center Thomas Bryant chest-bumped equally excitable coach Tom Crean during a rout of the Redhawks.

      Indiana (7-1) was closing in on a 13-point halftime lead when the 6-foot-10 Bryant hit the floor to try to recover a loose ball but the referee ruled the hustling big man out of bounds. Bryant jumped up, clapped his hands, spotted the clapping Crean shouting encouragement and responded in kind with an enthusiastic chest bump.

      Junior point guard Robert Johnson scored a game-high 17 points for a balanced Indiana squad. Freshman forward De'Ron Davis scored 14 off the bench for a second consecutive game, his best college outputs so far. Southeast Missouri State (4-4) got a team-high 16 points from freshman guard Denzel Mahoney.

      No. 20 South Carolina 70, Florida International 54

      COLUMBIA, S.C. -- Stingy defense and hot perimeter shooting from Duane Notice and PJ Dozier kept the Gamecocks unblemished.

      Notice and Dozier combined for eight 3-pointers and 47 points, while the defense forced 23 turnovers and limited the Golden Panthers to 41.3 percent shooting.

      Notice gunned in a game-high 27, canning 6-of-10 shots from behind the arc, while Dozier finished with 20 points and seven rebounds in just 22 minutes as the Gamecocks upped their record to 8-0, their second straight 8-0 start. Eric Nottage paced the Panthers (3-6) with 20 points, while forward Michael Kessens scored 12 points and grabbed 10 rebounds.

  • Top 25 roundup: No. 11 UCLA upsets No. 1 Kentucky
    By The Sports Xchange / Saturday, December 3, 2016

    LEXINGTON, Ky. -- Isaac Hamilton scored 19 points and No. 11 UCLA used 10 3-pointers and 53 percent shooting to upset No. 1 Kentucky 97-92 on Saturday at Rupp Arena.

    • The loss snapped the Wildcats' 42-game home winning streak.

      T.J. Leaf had 17 points, Thomas Welsh and Lonzo Ball each scored 14 and Bryce Alford added 11 for the Bruins (9-0), who pushed ahead for good during the last 3:18 of the first half and first 3:05 of the second half when they outscored Kentucky 23-6.

      Malik Monk scored 24 points and De'Aaron Fox had 20 for the Wildcats (7-1), who shot a season-low 41.2 percent. Bam Adebayo had 18 points and 13 rebounds, and Isaiah Briscoe scored 12.

      No. 25 West Virginia 66, No. 6 Virginia 57

      CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. -- Jevon Carter scored 11 points and Nathan Adrian added 10 as the Mountaineers ended the Cavaliers' 24-game home winning streak.

      West Virginia (6-1) shot 45 percent from the field and forced Virginia (7-1) into 14 turnovers. The lead changed hands 14 times in the second half before a 3-pointer from Esa Ahmad with 1:27 left gave the Mountaineers a three-point lead.

      The Cavaliers were led by Darius Thompson, who scored a game-high 14 points. Virginia's London Perrantes was 2 of 10 from the field and scored only six points, but dished out seven assists.

      No. 9 Baylor 76, No. 7 Xavier 61

      WACO, Texas -- Manu Lecomte poured in 24 points and dished out five assists, while Johnathan Motley pitched in 17 points and grabbed eight rebounds as the Bears dismissed the Musketeers.

      Baylor (8-0) was left out of the Top 25 to begin the season but has since defeated No. 23 Oregon, No. 14 Louisville, then-No. 24 Michigan State and Xavier.

      Trevon Bluiett and Edmond Sumner had 23 and 19 points, respectively, for Xavier (7-1). The Musketeers shot 23 percent in the second half and 31 for the contest.

      No. 8 Gonzaga 69, No. 16 Arizona 62

      LOS ANGELES -- Przemek Karnowski hit 9 of 13 shots and scored 18 points as the Bulldogs held off the shorthanded Wildcats in the inaugural Hoophall LA doubleheader.

      Karnowski used his 300 pounds to muscle close to the basket, finishing with both hands, hitting jump hooks and fade-away jumpers in the lane at Staples Center. Josh Perkins added 16 points for Gonzaga (8-0), which is 8-0 and off to its best start since they opened 9-0 in 2012-13.

      Rawle Alkins led Arizona (6-2) with 16 points. The Wildcats had only seven available scholarship players and was without Parker Jackson-Cartwright, who suffered a high ankle sprain Wednesday night.

      No. 2 Villanova 88, Saint Joseph's 57

      VILLANOVA, Pa.-- Kris Jenkins scored 20 points and Josh Hart registered 16 points, 11 rebounds and 10 assists as the Wildcats cruised to victory over the Hawks.

      Darryl Reynolds added 13 points and Jalen Brunson contributed 11, while Eric Paschall and Donte DiVincenzo each had 10 for the Villanova (8-0), who won their record 16th straight Big 5 game. It was also Villanova's 42nd consecutive victory at The Pavilion.

      Lamarr Kimble paced Saint Joseph's (3-4) with 15 points, while Shavar Newkirk had 11.

      No. 4 Kansas 89, Stanford 74

      LAWRENCE, Kan. -- Frank Mason scored 20 points as the Jayhawks defeated the Cardinal.

      Devonte' Graham added 15 points and Josh Jackson scored 13. Svi Mykhailiuk added 13 for Kansas (7-1), who went 12 of 22 from 3-point range.

      Reid Travis recorded a career-high 29 points and nine rebounds for Stanford (6-3). He set opponent records against the Jayhawks for free throws made (19) and attempted (22).

      No. 5 Duke 94, Maine 55

      DURHAM, N.C. -- Luke Kennard scored 35 points as the Blue Devils blasted the Black Bears in a game that marked the debuts of heralded freshmen Jayson Tatum and Marques Bolden,

      Tatum, who was in the starting lineup, had 10 points and eight rebounds. He left the game with a cramping right leg with 17:58 remaining and didn't return. Bolden finished with seven points and five rebounds for Duke (8-1).

      Ilker Er scored 20 points, including 18 in the first 17 minutes, for Maine (2-6), which was saddled with a season-low point total.

      No. 10 Creighton 82, Akron 70

      OMAHA, Neb. -- Marcus Foster scored 27 points and the Bluejays slowed a late second-half comeback by the Zips to keep their undefeated season intact.

      Cole Huff (16 points), Maurice Watson (14), and Justin Patton (11) also finished in double figures for Creighton (8-0) with Foster and Patton scoring 10 or more points in each of their first eight games with the Bluejays.

      Kwan Cheatham Jr. topped Akron (6-2) with 17 points. Isaiah Johnson scored 13, and Antino Jackson added 12.

      No. 14 Louisville 79, Grand Canyon 70

      PHOENIX -- Deng Adel scored 11 of his 15 points in the second half and V.J. King had 14 points to help the Cardinals pull away from the Antelopes.

      Ray Spalding also scored 14 points for Louisville (7-1), which enjoyed a 36-25 rebounding edge. The Cardinals played without 7-foot center Anas Mahmoud, who did not make the trip after suffering what coach Rick Pitino called concussion symptoms after being struck against Purdue on Wednesday.

      DeWayne Russell had a career-high 42 points, making 14 of 27 field goal attempts and 3 of 6 3-pointers for Grand Canyon (3-4). No Antelope had scored more than 30 points since the school went to NCAA Division I status in 2013-14.

      No. 15 Purdue 90, Morehead State 56

      WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. -- The Boilermakers made 11 3-pointers during the first 20 minutes, including four apiece from Dakota Mathias and Carsen Edwards, en route to a rout of the Eagles.

      Edwards finished with 16 points, Mathias added 14 and Caleb Swanigan and P.J. Thompson each scored 13 for Purdue (6-2).

      Miguel Dicent scored 11 points for Morehead State (2-5). The Eagles were without coach Sean Woods, who was suspended without pay on Nov. 22 after reports surfaced from players claiming they were being mistreated.

      No. 17 Wisconsin 90, Oklahoma 70

      MADISON, Wis. -- Nigel Hayes scored 18 of his 28 points in the second half as the Badgers routed the Sooners.

      D'Mitrick Trice, Bronson Koenig and Ethan Happ delivered 16 points apiece for Wisconsin (7-1), who won its third consecutive game. The Badgers registered a season-low five turnovers and only gave up 10 second-half points in the paint to Oklahoma (5-2).

      Rashard Odomes scored 17 points for the Sooners, who were competing in their first true road game of the season.

      No. 18 Butler 82, Central Arkansas 58

      INDIANAPOLIS -- Kelan Martin scored 30 points, including five 3-pointers in the second half, to guide the Bulldogs past the Bears and to their best start since 2008-09.

      Tyler Wideman was the only Butler player to score in double figures with 10 points. Martin shot 11 for 22 from the field - 5 for 11 from 3-point range as Butler (8-0) shot 49.2 percent overall and was 20 for 28 inside the arc.

      Jordan Howard scored 20 points and Derreck Brooks added 15 for the Bears (1-7).

      Providence 63, No. 21 Rhode Island 60

      PROVIDENCE, R.I. -- Kyron Cartwright had 19 points and eight assists to help the Friars upset the in-state rival Rams.

      Rodney Bullock, Providence's leading scorer at 21.4 points, had 17 after scoring a career-high 36 against New Hampshire on Wednesday. Jalen Lindsey added 13 points for the Friars (6-2).

      Hassan Martin posted 14 points and 17 rebounds and Jared Terrell scored 14 for Rhode Island (5-3).

      No. 22 Syracuse 77, North Florida 71

      SYRACUSE, N.Y. -- Andrew White scored 26 points and was 7 for 13 from 3-point range as the Orange made 13 of 24 from beyond the arc en route to victory over the Ospreys.

      Freshman Tyus Battle, making his first career start, shot 4 of 5 from beyond the arc and finished with a career-best 19 points for Syracuse (5-2). Frank Howard had 10 points and 13 assists for the Orange.

      North Florida's Dallas Moore, the Atlantic Sun Conference reigning Player of the Year, scored 30 points. Nick Malonga added 12 points for the Ospreys (3-7).

      No. 23 Oregon 128, Savannah State 59

      EUGENE, Ore. -- Tyler Dorsey scored a career-high 29 points as the Ducks set school records for points and field goals in a game.

      Dillon Brooks added 22 points while center Chris Boucher had 12 for Oregon (5-2), which won its fifth straight game. The Ducks, who have won 30 straight at home, outscored the Tigers 70-24 in the second half.

      Dexter McClanahan scored 13 points to lead Savannah State (2-8).

  • Butler home after bouncing into poll with wins over Arizona, Utah
    By The Sports Xchange / Friday, December 2, 2016

    INDIANAPOLIS — The Butler University basketball team is coming off huge wins over No. 16 Arizona in the Las Vegas Invitational championship Nov. 25 and then at Utah on Monday.

    • So Butler coach Chris Holtmann is hoping for no letdown when his No. 18 Bulldogs (7-0) are home to face Central Arkansas (1-6) at 4 p.m. (EDT) at Hinkle Fieldhouse.

      "Central Arkansas is a team that has been able to score really well. They've been good offensively," Holtmann said. "Right now you want to have a good understanding of the opponent. You also want to really focus on your team's improvement and your team's growth. That's our dual focus as we continue to play non-league games."

      The Bears are averaging 70.7 points per game on 42.0 percent shooting. In addition to their scoring, Holtmann said the Bears play a matchup zone that Butler needs to be prepared to face.

      Another focus is Holtmann doesn't want his team looking ahead to some key upcoming dates at in-state rival Indiana State (Wednesday), hosting Cincinnati (Dec. 10) and playing No. 13 Indiana University (Dec. 17) in the Crossroads Classic in Indianapolis.

      "The challenge is we did not play well last year when we came back after being gone for a week to Puerto Rico," Holtmann said. "Our guys are aware of that and I think you try to stress to your guys that this is about playing to the standard and expectation that we have on every possession. That's what we're trying to do, regardless of the opponent. That's our focus. Quality teams may not have their A game every night. There is competitiveness, awareness and an attention to detail every night and that's what it needs to be."

      Butler is off to its best start since beginning the 2008-09 season 8-0. The Bulldogs are led by junior forward Kelan Martin, who is averaging a team-high 16.4 points.

      Butler is hitting 50.4 percent of its shots while holding opponents to 40.6 percent.

      "Six of our 11 guys haven't played in a Butler uniform before, so that's over half the team, so we knew we would have difficult moments this year going through some growing pains," Holtmann said. "What I've been pleased with most is we've been able to weather those difficult moments and able to respond to some game adversity and come back with the right approach. That's allowed us to win some close games."

      Despite losing six of seven, all on the road, Central Arkansas lost by just two points (49-47) at No. 17 Wisconsin Nov. 11 and 12 (102-90) at Oklahoma State Nov. 14.

      Junior guard Jordan Howard leads the Bears with a 16.3 scoring average, just a tick ahead of senior guard Derreck Brooks' 16.2 average.

      Thursday, Central Arkansas started strong, taking a 37-30 lead at half-time at Southeast Missouri. The Bears then were outscored 36-1 to open the second half and lost 87-63.

      "Like we tell the guys all the time, you just have to learn how to win," Bears coach Russ Pennell said. "It's not about talent, it's not basketball plays. It's the other stuff. It's the loose ball. It's standing in the right place, all the positioning stuff, rebounding."

      In the team's 81-76 victory over Army, Pennell said his team did those things.

  • Top 25 roundup: No. 19 Iowa State upset by Cincinnati
    By The Sports Xchange / Thursday, December 1, 2016

    AMES, Iowa -- Jacob Evans hit two free throws with 20 seconds left in overtime to help lift visiting Cincinnati to a 55-54 victory over No. 19 Iowa State on Thursday.

    • The Bearcats (6-1) rallied from a four-point deficit to force overtime and snap the Cyclones' 37-game non-conference home winning streak. Evans closed with 11 points while Kyle Washington had a game-high 13 points and 10 rebounds for Cincinnati.

      Monte Morris scored a game-high 15 points, Matt Thomas had 13 while Darryl Bowie added 11 off the bench as the Cyclones (5-2) dropped their second straight.

      The second half featured nine lead changes and five ties, including a final deadlock in regulation as Cincinnati scored the final four points -- including Clark's jumper to force a 50-50 tie with eight seconds showing to send the game into overtime.

      No. 8 Gonzaga 97, Mississippi Valley State 63

      SPOKANE, Wash. -- The Bulldogs had four players with at least 13 points -- led by 15 apiece from Josh Perkins and Silas Melson -- in a rout of the Delta Devils.

      Perkins scored all of his points in the first half, fueling Gonzaga to a 49-28 halftime lead. The Bulldogs (7-0) were also led by Zach Collins with 13 points and nine rebounds and Nigel Williams-Goss' 13 points and five assists.

      Rashaan Surles had 13 points and seven rebounds while Amos Given had 12 points and Terence Traylor added 11 for Mississippi Valley State (0-9).

      No. 20 South Carolina 68, Vermont 50

      COLUMBIA, S.C. -- P.J. Dozier scored 21 points and Sindarius Thornwell had a big all-around game as the Gamecocks remained undefeated.

      Thornwell finished with 11 points, five rebounds and a career-high nine assists. Sophomore Chris Silva added 12 points for South Carolina (7-0).

      Anthony Lamb led the Catamounts (6-3) with 14 points. Lamb was the only Vermont player to finish in double figures. The Catamounts shot 35.3 percent from the floor.

      No. 24 Florida 91, North Florida 60

      JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- The Gators avoided a letdown after returning to the national rankings this week for the first time in two years by routing the Ospreys.

      Chris Chiozza recorded 16 points, nine assists and four rebounds for Florida (7-1). Justin Leon scored 13, Canyon Barry 12 and Devin Robinson added 10 points and six rebounds for the Gators.

      Dallas Moore scored 31 points for North Florida (3-6). It was the fifth 30-point game of his career.

      Florida made it into the Top 25 this week for the first time since November 2014. It is the first time the Gators are ranked under second-year coach Mike White.

  • Top 25 roundup: No. 13 Indiana upends No. 3 North Carolina
    By The Sports Xchange / Thursday, December 1, 2016

    BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- Third-ranked North Carolina became the latest top-three team to fall to No. 13 Indiana as the Hoosiers enjoyed an early double-digit lead and fended off a late comeback for a 76-67 victory Wednesday in an ACC/Big Ten Challenge game.

    • Indiana (5-1), which opened the season with an overtime win over then-No. 3 Kansas in Hawaii, defeated six opponents ranked in the top three since 2011-12. That ties Duke for most in the country.

      The Hoosiers' OG Anunoby led a balanced attack with 16 points and punctuated the outcome with a two-handed dunk for an 11-point lead with just under 2 minutes remaining.

      Justin Jackson scored 21 points for the Tar Heels (7-1), who trimmed a 12-point halftime deficit to four with just under five minutes remaining, but couldn't get any closer.

      No. 14 Louisville 71, No. 15 Purdue 64

      LOUISVILLE, Ky. -- The Cardinals held Boilermakers bigmen Isaac Haas and Caleb Swanigan to a combined 22 points in their ACC-Big Ten Challenge victory.

      Ray Spalding and Mangok Mathiang scored 11 points apiece while grabbing nine and eight rebounds, respectively, for Louisville (6-1). The Cardinals shot 48.3 percent from the field while limiting Purdue (5-2) to 35.3 percent.

      Swanigan, the Boilermakers' leading scorer at 18.8 points entering the game, hit his first field goal -- a 3-pointer -- with 9:48 remaining. He finished with 14 points and 11 rebounds.

      No. 6 Virginia 63, Ohio State 61

      CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. -- The undefeated Cavaliers wiped out a 16-point first-half deficit to knock off the Buckeyes for the second straight season in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge.

      London Perrantes scored a game-high 19 points for Virginia (7-0), which overcame a subpar shooting performance (38 percent) from the field but made key plays down the stretch.

      Ohio State (6-1) was led by Jae'Sean Tate with 14 points and JaQuan Lyle scored 12. The Buckeyes led for the majority of the game while shooting 50 percent from the floor, but Lyle's last-second 3-pointer came up short.

      No. 9 Baylor 79, Sam Houston State 45

      WACO, Texas -- After defeating a string of high-profile opponents last week, the Bears avoided a letdown by routing the Bearkats.

      King McClure led the way with 14 points, Al Freeman scored 13 and Johnathan Motley recorded eight points and 14 rebounds for Baylor (7-0).

      Aurimus Majauskas led Sam Houston State (4-3) with 13 points. The Bearkats shot 28 percent from the field.

      No. 11 UCLA 97, UC Riverside 57

      LOS ANGELES -- The Bruins rolled to another resounding victory in preparation for this weekend's clash with the nation's top team, routing the Highlanders.

      Isaac Hamilton had 27 points and six rebounds for UCLA (8-0), which visits No. 1 Kentucky on Saturday. T.J. Leaf had had 18 points and 10 rebounds.

      Aaron Holiday came off the bench to score 17 points for the Bruins, who matched their best start since the 2013-14 team won its first eight games. Thomas Welsh had 12 points and 12 rebounds.

      Secean Johnson had 17 points for UC Riverside (1-4).

      No. 12 Saint Mary's 66, Stanford 51

      STANFORD, Calif. -- Calvin Hermanson made 7 of 9 3-point shots and scored a career-high 25 points to lead the Gaels past the Cardinal.

      Jock Landale scored 13 points for Saint Mary's (6-0), and Joe Rahon added 10. The Gaels shot 55.1 percent from the field and was 11 of 27 from 3-point range.

      Grant Verhoeven came off the bench to score 12 points, all in the second half, for Stanford (6-2), and Robert Cartwright had 10 points. The Cardinal shot 38.2 and were 3 for 12 from beyond the arc.

      No. 16 Arizona 85, Texas Southern 63

      TUCSON, Ariz. -- Freshman Lauri Markkanen scored 19 points to lead the Wildcats, who played with seven scholarship players for much of game.

      Starting point guard Parker Jackson-Cartwright left with 12:27 to go in the first half, gimpy and favoring his right leg as he walked to the sideline. He left the court to receive treatment on a reported ankle injury and did not return to the sideline. Kobi Simmons scored 15 for Arizona (6-1).

      Derrick Griffin had 12 points and 11 rebounds for his third double-double of the season for the Tigers (4-3). Zach Lofton scored 19 for Texas Southern.

      No. 23 Oregon 93, Western Oregon 54

      EUGENE, Ore. -- Dillon Brooks scored a season-high 21 points to lead the Ducks to an easy victory over the Division II Wolves.

      Roman Sorkin added a career-high 15 points, while Chris Boucher scored 14 as Oregon (6-2) earned its fourth consecutive victory.

      Bryan Berg had 17 points to lead the Wolves (4-4).

  • Top 25 roundup: No. 5 Duke upends Michigan State
    By The Sports Xchange / Tuesday, November 29, 2016

    DURHAM, N.C. -- Grayson Allen scored 24 points and ignited a second-half burst as fifth-ranked Duke defeated Michigan State 78-69 in the ACC-Big Ten Challenge on Tuesday night at Cameron Indoor Stadium.

    • Luke Kennard's 20 points, Amile Jefferson's 17 points and 13 rebounds and Frank Jackson's 11 points also lifted the Blue Devils (7-1), who won despite failing to have five double-figure scorers for the first time this season.

      Duke broke a 48-48 tie with a 9-0 run in less than 90 seconds, sparked by a three-point play from Allen at the 13:36 mark and followed by back-to-back drives for baskets by Jackson before Kennard's jumper.

      Eron Harris had 14 points, and Miles Bridges and Nick Ward each scored 11 for the Spartans, who fell to 4-4 while facing a grueling early schedule. Kenny Goins added 10 points.

      No. 2 Villanova 82, Pennsylvania 57

      PHILADELPHIA -- Kris Jenkins scored 22 points, going over 1,000 for his career, while Josh Hart had 12 points and nine assists, leading the Wildcats to a resounding victory over their Big 5 rival Quakers.

      Donte DiVincenzo scored 13 points, Darryl Reynolds had 12 points and eight rebounds and Jalen Brunson scored 11 points for Villanova (7-0), which opened the Big 5 portion of its schedule with its 14th straight victory over Penn.

      Villanova starting guard Phil Booth missed his fourth straight game with tendinitis in his left knee. In addition, preseason All-American and Player of the Year candidate Hart didn't start because he was late for a weightlifting session. DiVincenzo received his first collegiate start in Hart's place.

      No. 4 Kansas 91, Long Beach State 61

      LAWRENCE, Kan. -- Lagerald Vick made all nine shots he attempted and scored a game-high 23 points as the Jayhawks routed the 49ers.

      Kansas (6-1) rode 59.6 percent shooting to coast to their sixth straight victory, while extending the nation's longest active homecourt win streak to 45 straight.

      Frank Mason, who came in as the Jayhawks' leading scorer, managed only eight points, but added eight assists and six rebounds.

      The loss was the eighth straight for Long Beach State (1-8) and part of a nine-game road swing that mercifully concludes Saturday at New Mexico State.

      No. 7 Xavier 85, North Dakota State 55

      CINCINNATI -- Trevon Bluiett scored 23 points with five rebounds and seven assists and Sean O'Mara added 12 points to lift the Musketeers over the Bison.

      J.P. Macura added 11 points and three assists for Xavier (7-0), which plays at No. 9 Baylor on Saturday after rolling to its 26th consecutive non-conference win at home. The Musketeers outrebounded North Dakota State 43-27, including 15-8 on the offensive end.

      Deng Geu led the Bison (5-3) with 18 points. North Dakota State's A.J. Jacobson, who came in shooting 78 percent from 3-point range, was held scoreless without a 3-point attempt.

      No. 10 Creighton 93, Buffalo 72

      OMAHA, Neb. -- The Blue Jays shook off another slow start and outscored the Bulls by 19 points in the second half en route to victory.

      Marcus Foster led all scorers with 22 points, one more than 7-foot redshirt freshman Justin Patton's 21 for Creighton (7-0). Khyri Thomas added 18 and Maurice Watson finished with 15. Creighton broke the 90-point barrier for the fourth time this season by making at least 50 percent of their shots for the seventh straight game.

      Blake Hamilton and Willie Conner led Buffalo (4-3) with 21 points apiece.

      No. 17 Wisconsin 77, No. 22 Syracuse 60

      MADISON, Wis. -- Ethan Happ scored a game-high 24 points and grabbed 13 rebounds to pace the Badgers past the Orange in the Big Ten/ACC Challenge.

      Bronson Koenig added 20 points, which included 6-of-9 shooting from 3-point range for Wisconsin (6-2), which beat Syracuse for a second straight season in the challenge. Koenig finished one 3-pointer shy of the single-game program mark of seven.

      The Orange's Aaron White III scored 14 first-half points on 5-of-9 shooting from the field, but was held scoreless in the second half. John Gillon contributed 10 points for Syracuse, which shot 38.2 percent from the field and was 6 for 23 from beyond the arc.

      Valparaiso 65, No. 21 Rhode Island 62

      VALPARAISO, Ind. -- Alec Peters scored 27 points, grabbed nine rebounds and blocked Hassan Martin's 3-pointer at the buzzer, allowing the Crusaders to defeat the Rams for their victory over a ranked opponent in 18 years.

      The win was Valparaiso's first in 40 tries against ranked teams since defeating Mississippi State in the 1998 NCAA Tournament. Jubril Adekoya added 13 points for the Crusaders (7-1).

      Jared Terrell led the Rams (5-2) with 21 points while Martin had 16 points and six rebounds and Jarvis Garrett added 10 points.

  • UConn loses G Gilbert for season
    By The Sports Xchange / Tuesday, November 29, 2016

    Not much has gone right for Connecticut this season.

    • Ranked 18th in the preseason poll, the Huskies are 2-4, and injuries are starting to pile up.

      UConn announced Tuesday that highly touted freshman guard Alterique Gilbert will miss the rest of the season after dislocating his left shoulder in the Nov. 17 victory over Loyola Marymount. He has been diagnosed with a torn labrum, and is expected to undergo surgery within the next few weeks.

      Gilbert averaged 10.3 points and 2.3 steals in the three games he played.

      Last week, Terry Larrier, who is second on the team in scoring at 13.5 points, suffered an ACL injury that ended his season.

      Also, UConn announced freshman forward Mamadou Diarra will sit out the season with knee discomfort after being diagnosed with patellofemoral syndrome.

  • Top 25 roundup: Kentucky's Fox posts triple-double
    By The Sports Xchange / Monday, November 28, 2016

    NASSAU, Bahamas -- Freshman guard De'Aaron Fox recorded Kentucky's first triple-double since Chris Mills had one in 1988, and No. 1 Kentucky ran its record to 7-0 with a 115-69 victory over Arizona State on Monday night at the Atlantis resort on Paradise Island.

    • Fox's stat line of 14 points, 11 rebounds and 10 assists was only the second triple-double in the program's storied history.

      Freshman guard Malik Monk led the Wildcats with 23 points. Isaiah Briscoe added 20 points on 7-of-9 shooting in his first game back after missing two games due to a severe muscle bruise.

      Arizona State (4-3) was led by freshman guard Sam Cunliffe with 14 points.

      No. 18 Butler 68, Utah 59

      SALT LAKE CITY -- Kelan Martin scored 18 points and Tyler Wideman added 15 to lead No. 18 Butler to a victory over Utah.

      The Bulldogs proved tenacious on the defensive end in earning their second straight win over a Pac-12 opponent. Butler forced Utah to commit 18 turnovers and scored 23 points off those turnovers. The Utes also struggled to get into any sustained offensive rhythm, shooting just 36.5 percent from the floor (19 of 52), including 15.0 percent (3 of 20) from 3-point range.

      Kyle Kuzma scored 21 points and collected 10 rebounds to lead Utah while Lorenzo Bonam added 17. The Utes fell to 1-2 all-time versus the Bulldogs.

      No. 23 Oregon 68, Boise State 63

      EUGENE, Ore. -- Dylan Ennis scored 18 points and Tyler Dorsey added 17 to lead the Ducks past the Broncos.

      Paris Austin finished with 16 points and Nick Duncan contributed 15 for Boise State (3-3).

      Oregon (5-2) rallied from an early 14-point deficit to close within 32-29 at halftime. The Broncos were still up by eight with less than seven minutes to play before the Ducks grabbed the lead with a 10-0 run. Ennis' 3-pointer with 3:33 to go put Oregon in front for the first time since the opening minutes.

      No. 25 West Virginia 108, Manhattan 61

      MORGANTOWN, W.Va. -- Esa Ahmad scored 17 of his career-best 19 points in the opening half, and the Mountaineers put away the Jaspers early. West Virginia forced a school-record 40 turnovers, five coming on steals by Ahmad.

      Nathan Adrian finished with 15 points and seven rebounds, and Daxter Miles scored 11 for the Mountaineers (5-1). Walk-on James Long added 10 points, nearly matching his previous two-year total of 13.

      Zavier Peart scored 11 points and Samson Usilo had nine for Manhattan (2-4). Zavier Turner, following a 32-point performance at Detroit, didn't score his first basket until 18:23 remained in the game. He managed only five points, 14 below his season average.

  • Kentucky, Villanova remain 1-2 in AP poll
    By The Sports Xchange / Monday, November 28, 2016

    Kentucky and Villanova remained 1-2 in the Associated Press men's college basketball poll released Monday.

    • Baylor made the week's biggest jump, moving from No. 20 to ninth after beating Michigan State and Louisville in winning the Battle 4 Atlantis.

      The two Wildcats teams dominated the first-place votes from the 65-member national media panel. Kentucky (6-0) received 40 first-place votes while Villanova (6-0), the defending NCAA champion, was first on 20 ballots.

      North Carolina (7-0) moved up one place to third after winning the Maui Invitational, with the Tar Heels getting four first-place votes. Baylor (6-0) received the other first-place vote.

      Kansas (5-1) is No. 4, followed by Duke (6-1), Virginia (6-0), Xavier (6-0), Gonzaga (6-0), Baylor and Creighton (6-0) to round out the top 10.

      UCLA (7-0) is No. 11, followed by Saint Mary's (5-0), Indiana (4-1), Louisville (5-1), Purdue (5-1), Arizona (5-1), Wisconsin (5-2), Butler (6-0), Iowa State (5-1), South Carolina (6-0), Rhode Island (5-1), Syracuse (4-1), Oregon (4-2), Florida (6-1) and West Virginia (4-1).

      Indiana, No. 3 last week, dropped 10 places following the Hoosiers' stunning 71-68 overtime loss to Fort Wayne. Butler, South Carolina and Florida are making their first appearance of the season in the Top 25.

  • Top 25 roundup: No. 11 Zags top Iowa State for AdvoCare title
    By The Sports Xchange / Sunday, November 27, 2016

    No. 21 Iowa State's torrid second-half rally fell short against No. 11 Gonzaga as the Bulldogs held on for a 73-71 win in the AdvoCare Invitational championship game on Sunday afternoon at Orlando, Fla.

    • Gonzaga (6-0) missed its last 11 field goals over the last 5:40. Forward Zach Collins made one of two free throws with 14 seconds left to give the Bulldogs a 73-31 lead.

      Iowa State (5-1) failed to get a shot off in time as guard Monte Morris' release of a 3-point shot was a split-second after the buzzer. The shot did not fall anyway.

      Cyclones guard Deonte Burton scored 21 of his 29 points in the second half to fuel the Cyclones' rally. Nigel Williams-Goss led Gonzaga with 17 points.

      No. 3 Indiana 85, Mississippi Valley State 52

      BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- Five days after a stunning overtime loss at Fort Wayne, Indiana didn't even require the services of its leading scorer to dispose of Mississippi Valley State.

      OG Anunoby scored a game-high 21 points on 7-of-12 shooting and hit three 3-pointers for the Hoosiers (4-1). Thomas Bryant scored 13 and grabbed a game-high 11 rebounds.

      Junior guard James Blackmon Jr., who has averaged 20.5 points with 15 3-pointers, sat out the game with a mild knee injury. Indiana could ill afford to have another setback considering fourth-ranked North Carolina (7-0) visits Wednesday night.

      And who better to play sacrificial lamb than Mississippi Valley State (0-8), which has lost all but one of its games this season by double digits, including twice to Big Ten schools, 94-63 at Northwestern and 100-53 at Michigan State.

      No. 14 UCLA 74, Texas A&M 67

      Isaac Hamilton had 17 points and seven rebounds to help the Bruins remain unbeaten with a victory over the Aggies in the championship game of the Wooden Legacy tournament in Anaheim, Calif.

      Tournament MVP Lonzo Ball had 16 points and 10 assists for UCLA (7-0), which claimed its first in-season tournament title since 2007. T.J. Leaf had 13 points and nine rebounds. Bryce Alford also had 13 points.

      Admon Gilder scored 17 points for Texas A&M (4-2). All-tournament selection Tyler Davis had 16 points and eight rebounds. Robert Williams scored 12 points. Tonny Trocha-Morelos had 11 points and nine rebounds. Aggies scoring leader D.J. Hogg was held to eight points on 4-of-18 shooting.

      No. 15 Saint Mary's 76, UAB 63

      LAS VEGAS -- Center Jock Landale scored 20 points and 15th-ranked Saint Mary's shot well from long range to beat Alabama-Birmingham at the Orleans Arena in Las Vegas.

      Stefan Gonzalez, Emmett Naar and Calvin Hermanson scored 12 points apiece for Saint Mary's (5-0), which made 13 of 26 3-point shots and shot 42 percent from the field overall. Saint Mary's also made all nine of its free throws.

      Chris Cokley scored 20 points on 10-of-13 shooting for UAB (3-3), but the rest of the team was just 16 of 42 from the field. Dirk Williams, the Blazers' leading scorer coming into the game at 13.4 points per game, was 1 of 9 from the field and finished with four points, all in the second half.

      The Gaels used a 10-0 run late in the first half to take a 17-point lead with 2:01 left before halftime, which ended with Saint Mary's holding a 43-27 edge.

      No. 16 Wisconsin 95, Prairie View A&M 50

      MADISON, Wis. -- Senior forward Nigel Hayes scored a game-high 17 points in No. 16 Wisconsin's rout against Prairie View A&M.

      Sophomore forward Ethan Happ contributed 12 points and senior guards Zak Schowalter and Bronson Koenig added 11 each. Happ, the Big Ten freshman of the year last season, had 13 rebounds to post his third double-double of the season for Wisconsin (5-2).

      Hayes delivered 13 first-half points for the Badgers, who shot 62.1 percent (18 of 29) from the field and had 24 points in the paint in the first. Wisconsin shot 55.9 percent (33 of 59) overall from the field in the win, in which six players registered double-digit scoring.

      Junior F Zachary Hamilton scored a team-high 15 points for Prairie View A&M (2-4), which shot 37.3 percent (22 of 59) from the field in the setback. Senior guard Daquan Cook added nine points.

  • No. 13 Oregon looks to get well against Boise State
    By The Sports Xchange / Sunday, November 27, 2016

    EUGENE, Ore. -- Oregon is back home until 2017.

    • The 13th-ranked Ducks (4-2) played four of their first six games away from home before returning home for nine consecutive games in their home state beginning with Monday night's tip-off against Boise State (3-2).

      "We've got home games now in December," Oregon coach Dana Altman said. "We've got to get home and get to work and get a lot of things ironed out."

      Oregon was ranked as high as No. 4 in the country before losses to Baylor and Georgetown that may knock it out of the polls on Monday.

      "I've got faith in these guys," Altman said. "These guys have been through it. They won a lot of games and finished second in the Pac-12 and then first. They won a (Pac-12) tournament and went to the finals in the other one. They'll bounce back."

      After losing its opener to Georgetown at the Maui Invitational last week, Oregon beat Tennessee and Connecticut.

      "I think UConn has a lot of potential and they will get better and Tennessee is young, so they will grow as a team," Altman said. "I think those are three good games for us. Three athletic teams and it gave us an idea of all the things that we need to work on. Our guys know that. They know they are not playing like they are capable, especially the veterans."

      Oregon welcomed back all-conference forward Dillon Brooks in Maui after he missed the first three games of the season following foot surgery in July. The 6-foot-7 junior came off the bench to average 11.3 points in 18.7 minutes per game.

      He is expected to return to the starting line-up against Boise State.

      "I thought for not playing four- and one-half months, he stepped up and played good," Altman said.

      Altman will have to alter his rotation when Brooks returns to the starting line-up. The seventh-year coach said he plans to use a month at home to settle on playing time heading into conference play later this month.

      "This gives us a month to try and really get things in place with the next seven games in Oregon," he said. "We have to get to work."

      Center Chris Boucher leads Oregon with 15 points while averaging 6.8 rebounds. Junior forward Jordan Bell leads Oregon with 8.3 rebounds while scoring 11.2 points per game.

      Boise State, which beat Oregon 74-72 last season, lost to College of Charleston and Mississippi State before winning two straight against Western Michigan and Presbyterian. Six-foot-seven forward Chandler Hutchison leads the team with 18.4 points and 9.6 rebounds per game.

      Broncos coach Leon Rice is well aware the rematch with the Ducks will result in a tough battle.

      "Oregon is on the schedule next so we have to step way up," Rice said at a postgame press conference. "This is a terrific Oregon team and a team that's going to contend for a Pac 12 title."

  • Jaspers to face W.Va. squad reeling from loss to Temple
    By The Sports Xchange / Sunday, November 27, 2016

    MORGANTOWN, W.Va. -- No. 19 West Virginia left the championship game of the NIT Season Tipoff with a loss and multiple teaching points.

    • "We didn't guard," coach Bob Huggins said after Friday's 81-77 loss to Temple in Brooklyn. "We didn't guard the way we're capable of guarding. Our help defense was atrocious. We fouled too much. We didn't make free throws. We missed open shots. We missed 17 layups -- 17 point-blank at the rim."

      The Mountaineers (4-1) trailed 45-25 at the half, reclaimed the lead with eight minutes left and then failed to finish a game in which they were heavily favored.

      On Monday night, when Huggins' team returns to action against Manhattan (2-3), he's hoping for more consistent defense -- not just the suffocating spurt WVU showed during the second half against Temple. He's also bothered by 60 percent foul shooting and the Mountaineers penchant for committing too many turnovers themselves. They forced 19 by Temple only to give back 16.

      "That's a formula for disaster," Huggins said.

      If there was a positive from the defeat, sophomore forward Esa Ahmad scored a career-high 19 points, becoming the offensive force many fans envisioned.

      Nathan Adrian (13.2 points, 7.8 rebounds) and Ahmad (12 points, 5.4 rebounds) give West Virginia versatile forwards. Jevon Carter (9.6 points, 4 assists, 3.6 steals) and Tarik Phillip (9.6 points, 3.6 rebounds) lead a rotation of five guards that figures only to grow stronger with Daxter Miles (5.5 points) regaining his conditioning after a three-game illness absence.

      The Jaspers, picked fourth in the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference, also have lost to Temple, 88-67, on Nov 20. They edged Detroit 84-81 in double-overtime on Saturday behind 32 points by guard Zavier Turner. The 5-foot-9 Ball State transfer averages 19.4 points and three assists per game.

      Forward Zane Waterman (11.4 points, 7.4 rebounds) and freshman guard Aaron Walker (10.2 points, 4.0 rebounds) could be key if Manhattan is to stop West Virginia's trend of blowing out mid-majors in Morgantown. The Mountaineers have won three home games by an average of 40 points.

  • Watkins leads Penn State past George Washington
    By The Sports Xchange / Saturday, November 26, 2016

    Freshman forward Mike Watkins scored 20 points, and freshman guard Tony Carr made the clinching free throws in the final seconds to help Penn State beat George Washington 74-68 Saturday at Charles E. Smith Center in Washington, D.C.

    • The Nittany Lions trailed 32-23 at the break but opened the second half with a 19-6 run. Lamar Stevens' jumper put Penn State up 42-36 with 12 minutes to play.

      The Nittany Lions were up nine with one minute to play before the Colonials made a late challenge.

      George Washington junior guard Jaren Sina hit a 3-pointer with 34 seconds to play that trimmed the Penn State lead to 69-63. But Carr made five of six free throws in the final 30 seconds to help the Nittany Lions prevail.

      Senior forward Tyler Cavanaugh had 15 points and Sina finished with 13 points for the Colonials (3-3).

      Stevens collected 18 points and seven rebounds for Penn State, which bounced back from consecutive losses to Duke and Cincinnati with two straight wins.

      The Nittany Lions made 19 of 22 free throws for the game.

      Carr made a layup to tie the score 20-20 with six minutes left in the first half. But George Washington closed out the half on a 12-3 run, capped by a layup by Jordan Roland to give the Colonials a nine-point lead at intermission.

      Roland and freshman center Collin Smith each provided sparks off the bench in the first half with seven points apiece for the Colonials.

      George Washington opened the season with three straight wins but dropped back-to-back games to Georgia and Alabama-Birmingham and now lost three in a row.

      The Nittany Lions were without their second-leading scorer in injured junior guard Yuta Watanabe.

      Penn State hosts Georgia Tech on Tuesday as part of the ACC-Big Ten Challenge. The Colonials travel to Harvard on Tuesday.

  • Top 25 Roundup: South Carolina handles No. 18 Syracuse
    By The Sports Xchange / Saturday, November 26, 2016

    Sindarius Thornwell and Maik Kotsar each scored 16 points to lead South Carolina to a 64-50 victory over No. 18 Syracuse in the Brooklyn Holiday Hoops Invite at the Barclays Center on Saturday in New York.

    • Syracuse (4-1) never led in the game.

      P.J. Dozier added 15 points and 10 rebounds for South Carolina (6-0).

      Tyler Lydon led the Orangemen with 18 points and seven rebounds, as Syracuse shot only 31 percent from the floor and committed 17 turnovers.

      The Orangemen pulled to within 47-43 with 11:20 to play, but baskets from Dozier and Kotsar put South Carolina ahead 51-43 with 10:34 remaining, and Syracuse never got close again.

      No. 6 Duke, 93, Appalachian State 58

      DURHAM, N.C. -- Guard Grayson Allen scored all 21 of his points in the first half before limping to the bench in the second half as the Blue Devils won in a romp at Cameron Indoor Stadium.

      Allen's ailment was described as a sore toe.

      Guard Luke Kennard scored 18 points, while forward Amile Jefferson and guard Frank Jackson each had 15 points for the Blue Devils (6-1).

      Guard Matt Jones added 10 points, giving the Blue Devils five double-figure scorers in all their games this season. Duke has won four games in a row since a last-second loss to Kansas.

      Guard Kelvin Robinson scored 12 points and forward Griffin Kinney had 11 for Appalachian State (2-3), which had its two-game winning streak snapped.

      No. 7 Virginia 63, Providence 52

      NICEVILLE, Fla. -- Guard London Perrantes scored 11 points to help No. 7 Virginia defeat Providence and capture the Emerald Coast Classic.

      Perrantes added eight rebounds and five assists to his impressive stat line that earned him the MVP honors. The Cavaliers (6-0) shot 59.5 percent from the field.

      Providence (4-2) was led by Jalen Lindsey, who scored a game-high 18 points, including four 3-pointers.

      No. 9 Xavier 64, Northern Iowa 42

      CINCINNATI -- J.P. Macura scored 18 points and Edmond Sumner added 14 points and seven assists as the Musketeers, behind a stifling defense, defeated the Panthers for the second straight game at Cintas Center.

      Xavier (6-0) held the Panthers to 12 points in the first half.

      Jeremy Morgan led Northern Iowa (3-2) with 14 points and Klint Carlson added 11 for the Panthers, who shot 32.6 percent for the game and committed 14 turnovers.

      Xavier defeated Northern Iowa 67-59 last week in the championship game of the Tire Pros Invitational in Orlando, Fla.

      No. 12 Creighton 82, Loyola (Md.) 52

      OMAHA, Neb. -- Creighton overcame a rare slow start Saturday with a strong second half to pull away from Loyola (Md.).

      Freshman center Justin Patton finished with a game-high 17 points on 8-of-8 shooting for Creighton (6-0). Marcus Foster added 16 while Khyri Thomas and Martin Krampelj both finished with 10 points apiece.

      Jarred Jones and Andre Walker led Loyola (2-4) with 13 and 12 points, respectively.

      The Bluejays shot just 36.7 percent (11 of 30) in the first half but the Greyhounds couldn't take advantage of Creighton's shooting drought and went into the break down 30-25. By the 12-minute timeout, the Bluejays were up 55-38 and visions of a Loyola upset were dashed.

      No. 17 Purdue79, NJIT 68

      WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. -- After declaring for the NBA Draft in the spring, Caleb Swanigan of Purdue waited until the final day before withdrawing and announcing he would return to college for his sophomore season.

      Boilermaker coach Matt Painter and Purdue fans certainly are happy about that decision.

      The 6-foot-8 power forward was 6 of 6 from the field and 10 of 10 from the free-throw line, contributing 22 points and 13 rebounds in leading Purdue to a 79-68 over the New Jersey Institute of Technology.

      Purdue also got 19 points from freshman guard Carsen Edwards, including 15 in the second half when the Boilermakers (5-1) pulled away. Damon Lynn, who came in averaging 22.5 points, had 33 in a losing cause for NJIT (3-4), including 20 during the second half.

      No. 25 Michigan 64, Mt. St. Mary's 47

      ANN ARBOR, Mich. -- Guard Zak Irvin scored 14 points to lead No. 25 Michigan to the win over Mount St. Mary's in nonconference play.

      Sophomore forward Moritz Wagner had 13 points and six rebounds for the Wolverines (5-1). Guard Derrick Walton Jr. had 12 points, six rebounds and five assists for the Wolverines.

      Junior guard Junior Robinson finished with a season-high 21 points and sophomore guard Elijah Long added 13 points in defeat for the Mountaineers (1-6).

  • Top 25 roundup: Baylor rallies to beat No. 10 Louisville
    By The Sports Xchange / Friday, November 25, 2016

    Down by 20 points in the second half, No. 20 Baylor roared back to win the 2016 Battle 4 Atlantis 66-63 over No. 10 Louisville on Friday at Paradise Island, Bahamas.

    • The Bears (6-0) shot 65.4 percent in the second half, hitting 11 straight shots during one nine-minute stretch and outscored the Cardinals 17-2 during a remarkable 10-minute comeback.

      Baylor junior forward Johnathan Motley and sophomore guard King McClure had 15 apiece and junior forward Terry Maston had 12.

      Sophomore guard Donovan Mitchell had 17 points, eight rebounds and four assists and junior point Quentin Snider had 14 points for Louisville (5-1).

      As good as the Bears looked in the second half, Louisville dominated the first half. Scoring 25 of the first 30 points.

      Louisville's stifling defensive pressure held Baylor to just one field goal in the first six minutes and didn't allow the Bears to score consecutive field goals until less than four minutes before halftime.

      The Cardinals built a commanding 32-10 lead on the strength of 60-percent plus shooting.

      No. 1 Kentucky 111, Tennessee-Martin 76

      LEXINGTON, Ky. -- Kentucky improved to 6-0 while snapping Tennessee-Martin's five-game win streak.

      Kentucky used a 21-2 run over a span of 4:21 in the second half to push ahead 78-44 with 13:28 remaining.

      Freshman guard Malik Monk scored 26 points, freshman guard De'Aaron Fox had 16 points, freshman forward Bam Adebayo had a double-double of 15 points and 12 rebounds, freshman forward Wenyen Gabriel scored a career-best 15 points and freshman forward Sacha Killeya-Jones had 12 points.

      UT-Martin was led by junior guard Matthew Butler with 15 points.

      No. 5 Kansas 95, North Carolina-Asheville 57

      LAWRENCE, Kan. -- Freshman center Udoka Azubuike drew his first start and responded with 17 points on 8-for-9 shooting for Kansas.

      Senior guard Frank Mason led Kansas (5-1) for the fourth time in scoring, netting 21 points off 8-for-10 shooting. He made all five 3-pointers he attempted, helping Kansas shoot 62.3 percent from the field.

      Junior guards Kevin Vannatta and Ahmad Thomas scored 12 points apiece to lead UNC-Asheville.

      No. 7 Virginia 74, Iowa 41

      Virginia posted its fifth straight double-digit win while winning its semifinals game of the Emerald Coast Classic ila.n Niceville, F

      Virginia (5-0) shot 48 percent and held Iowa (3-2) to their lowest point total of the season.

      Three Cavaliers scored in double figures as forward Jared Reuter led the way with a career-high 14 points and nine rebounds. Guard London Perrantes added 12 points and forward Isaiah Wilkins tallied 11.

      Peter Jok was the only Hawkeye to score in double figures with 13 points.

      Temple 81, No. 19 West Virginia 77

      No. 19 West Virginia erased a 20-point halftime deficit but Temple answered with some clutch play to record the upset in the championship game of the NIT Season Tip-Off in Brooklyn, N.Y.

      Forward Obi Enechionyia, despite scoring only four of his 22 points in the second half, made a key 3-pointer with five minutes left for Temple (4-2). Freshman guard Alani Moore added 18 points, including 8 of 8 at the foul line where the Owls were 21 of 24 overall.

      Asa Ahmad scored 17 of his 19 points in the second half for West Virginia (4-1). Teyvon Myers scored 13 of his 15 after halftime but had an off-balance 3-point attempt blocked in the closing seconds.

      No. 21 Iowa State 73, Miami 56

      Iowa State used a strong start to the second half to win the first semifinal of the Advocare Invitational at the HP Fieldhouse at ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex in Lake Buena Vista, Fla.

      The Cyclone (5-0) led 35-29 at halftime, then held the Hurricanes (4-1) to just 27 points on 8-of-25 shooting over the final 20 minutes. Their biggest lead was 21 points at 73-52 with just over a minute left.

      Senior Deonte Burton scored a season-high 21-points and hit both his three-point attempts for Iowa State.

      Junior guard Ja'Quan Newton scored a career-high 21 points to lead Miami.

      No. 23 Rhode Island 82, Belmont 73

      Hassan Martin scored 19 of his career-high 31 points in the first half in Rhode Island's victory at the Ryan Center in Kingston, R.I.

      Jarvis Garrett added 23 points and combined with Martin to make 22 of 31 shots. Kuran Iverson had 13 points and E.C. Matthews totaled six for the Rams.

      Rhode Island (5-1) bounced back from its 75-65 setback against then-No. 1 Duke in the Hall of Fame Tip Off Tournament championship game last Sunday.

      Nick Smith tallied 17 points and Dylan Windler had 16 to lead the Bruins (1-3), who were without leading scorer Evan Bradds (concussion).

      No. 24 Michigan State 77, Wichita State 72

      No. 24 Michigan State (4-3) built an 18-point lead with 11:52 remaining, but Wichita State cut its deficit to one point with 4:12 left in the third-place game against Wichita State (5-2) in the Battle 4 Atlantis.

      A 14-0 Wichita State run that brought the Shockers within one ended when Michigan State freshman Cassius Winston made a 3-pointer to make it 69-65 Spartans.

      Freshman Miles Bridges led the Spartans with 21 points, and forward Darral Willis Jr. scored 16 points for Wichita State.

      No. 25 Florida State 72, Illinois 61

      Guard Dwayne Bacon scored 17 points to lead Florida State (5-1) to victory in the third-place game of the NIT Season Tip-Off at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, N.Y.

      Forward Jonathan Isaac added 15 points and team-high seven rebounds. Isaac scored in double figures in all six of the Seminoles' games so far, while Bacon extended his double-figure scoring streak to 15 games.

      Illinois' third straight loss was by no fault of guard Malcolm Hill, whose hot shooting helped the Fighting Illini overcome a second-half deficit and briefly take a lead with just over 12 minutes to play. Hill finished with a game-high 18 points.

  • No. 17 Purdue aims to stymie NJIT upset bid
    By The Sports Xchange / Friday, November 25, 2016

    WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. -- The schedule gets much more difficult next week when No. 17 Purdue plays at Louisville in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge, but for now, the Boilermakers (4-1) are encouraged about their potential.

    • Purdue crushed previously unbeaten Auburn 96-71 on Wednesday night in the Cancun Challenge championship game after blowing past Utah State 85-64 in Tuesday's semifinals.

      Combined with the final 7:08 of a Nov. 18 victory against Georgia State, the Boilermakers have outscored their three most recent opponents by 66 points in 87:08 of action.

      Riding a three-game winning streak, Purdue will face the New Jersey Institute of Technology (3-3) on Saturday afternoon in Mackey Arena in one of the Cancun Challenge's on-campus games.

      The Highlanders, who defeated Idaho State 71-67 in their four-team bracket in Cancun, will play a Purdue team that is averaging 86 points a game and is shooting 51.9 percent from the field, including 44.2 percent from 3-point range (50 of 113).

      While sophomore forward Caleb Swanigan (18.2 points, 11.8 rebounds) and junior center Isaac Haas (18.2 points, 4.8 rebounds) are Purdue's go-to weapons, freshman guard Carsen Edwards and junior forward Vince Edwards -- no relation -- found their collective games in Cancun.

      Against Auburn, Carsen Edwards scored a career-best 21 points, including 4 of 5 from beyond the arc, and Vince Edwards had 15 and now is 10 of 20 from 3-point range this season.

      Vince Edwards is averaging 12.2 points and 4.8 rebounds, and Carsen Edwards is averaging 10.2 points and 2.2 rebounds.

      The pair helped the Boilermakers shoot 64.3 percent against Auburn (36 of 56), including 17 of 26 from beyond the arc, one make short of the school record 18 against Vermont on Nov. 15, 2015.

      "It felt great," Carsen Edwards said of his career best. "When I am open, I am going to shoot it, and when I feel like I can get by my man, I will do that. You have to pick open spots and just take them. I have been trying to take what the defense gives me."

      Until the Auburn game, Purdue leading returning scorer Vince Edwards had struggled to make shots and avoid turnovers.

      "I just had to keep playing," Vince Edwards said. "The coaches just said to go out and play and play hard. The second half against Auburn was huge for me. It was like the weight of the world was finally off my shoulders.

      "Coach (Matt) Painter always says that good shots are going to fall. I was getting frustrated because I was getting good shots and missing those wide-open shots. My teammates were picking me up and staying with me."

      As well as the 6-foot-8 Swanigan and the 7-2 Haas are playing, Painter is thrilled with what he got from Edwards and Edwards in Mexico.

      "We really got some momentum against Auburn through their efforts in the second half," Painter said. "Vince made some shots, and obviously, Carsen was playing well. Things really got in sync for us in the second half of the Auburn game."

      NJIT is led by senior guard Damon Lynn (22.5 points), who tallied 24 or more points on three occasions this season, topped by 34 points against Utah State. Lynn leads the nation in career 3-pointers made (374) and ranks second in points (1,855).

      The Highlanders also notched a stunning win on the big stage two seasons ago when they upset then-No. 17 Michigan 72-70 behind 20 points from Lynn.

  • Top 25 roundup: No. 8 Arizona edges Santa Clara
    By The Sports Xchange / Friday, November 25, 2016

    Lauri Markkanen scored 16 points, and eighth-ranked Arizona edged Santa Clara 69-61 in the semifinals of the Las Vegas Invitational on Thursday.

    • Kobi Simmons added 14 points for the Wildcats (5-0). Arizona will face Butler in Friday's championship game.

      Jared Brownridge led Santa Clara with 25 points. The Broncos (3-3) will face Vanderbilt in the third-place game.

      No. 10 Louisville 62, Wichita State 52

      Quentin Snider scored 14 points and Louisville confounded Wichita State with a 2-3 zone defense Thursday's semifinal round of the Battle 4 Atlantis Tournament at the Imperial Arena in Paradise Island, Bahamas.

      Louisville (5-0) held the Shockers to 6-of-22 shooting from long range and advanced to Friday's title game against Baylor.

      Freshmen Markis McDuffie and Shaq Morris led the Shockers (5-1) with 10 points apiece. Wichita State will meet No. 24 Michigan State in the third-place game.

      No. 11 Gonzaga 82, Quinnipiac 62

      Johnathan Williams scored 13 points and Gonzaga rolled past Quinnipiac in the quarterfinals of the AdvoCare Invitational at Orlando, Fla.

      Zach Collins also scored 13 points for the Bulldogs (4-0), who will face Florida in Friday's semifinals.

      Quinnipiac was led by freshman Peter Kiss, who had 18 points and five rebounds. Quinnipiac (0-3) will face Seton Hall in a consolation game.

      No. 14 UCLA 99, Portland 77

      Lonzo Ball totaled 18 points and 11 assists as UCLA knocked off Portland in the quarterfinals of the Wooden Legacy in Fullerton, Calif.

      Thomas Welsh and Isaac Hamilton added 16 points apiece as the Bruins (5-0) placed six players in double figures. UCLA will face Nebraska in a semifinal game on Friday.

      Jazz Johnson scored 25 points for Portland (3-1). The Pilots will face Dayton in a consolation game Friday.

      No. 19 West Virginia 89, Illinois 57

      Nathan Adrian collected 13 points and eight rebounds and West Virginia used a smothering defense to rout Illinois in the NIT Tipoff semifinals at the Barclays Center in New York.

      Jevon Carter added 10 points and six steals for the Mountaineers (4-0), who forced 24 turnovers. West Virginia will face Temple in Friday's championship game.

      Michael Finke paced Illinois (4-2) with 13 points. The Illini will face No. 25 Florida State in the consolation game.

      No. 20 Baylor 73, No. 24 Michigan State 58

      Johnathan Motley scored 20 of his game-high 26 points in the first half, and Baylor rallied again in the second half to beat Michigan State in a semifinal game of the Battle 4 Atlantic Tournament at Imperial Arena in Paradise Island, Bahamas.

      Jo Lual-Acuil Jr. added 14 points and eight rebounds for the Bears (5-0), who also rallied from a halftime deficit against VCU in the first-round on Wednesday. Baylor will meet No. 10 Louisville in Friday's championship game.

      Freshman Miles Bridges led the Spartans (3-3) with 15 points. Michigan State has lost to three ranked opponents and will meet Wichita State in the third-place game.

      No. 21 Iowa State 73, Indiana State 71

      Matt Thomas hit a 3-pointer with 58 seconds remaining and Nazareth Mitrou-Long drew a late charge as Iowa State held off Indiana State in the AdvoCare Invitational at HP Field House in Orlando, Fla.

      Monte Morris scored 20 points and Mitrou-Long added 13 for the Cyclones (4-0). Iowa State will face Miami in Friday's semifinals.

      Laquarious Paige and Brenton Scott scored 20 points apiece for Indiana State (2-2). The Sycamores will face Stanford in a consolation game Friday.

      Temple 89, No. 25 Florida State 86

      Quinton Rose scored 26 points and hit the clinching free throws in the final seconds as Temple knocked off Florida State in the semifinals of the NIT Season Tip-Off at the Barclays Center in New York.

      Shizz Alston Jr. hit four 3-pointers and added 22 points for the Owls (3-2). Temple will face No. 19 West Virginia in Friday's championship game.

      Dwayne Bacon led the Seminoles with 22 points and Jonathan Isaac added 19. Florida State (4-1) will face Illinois in the third-place game.

  • Temple rallies to beat No. 25 Florida State
    By The Sports Xchange / Thursday, November 24, 2016

    The Temple Owls stormed back from 18 points down in the second half to upset No. 25 Florida State 89-86 on Thursday in the semifinal game of the NIT Season Tip-Off at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, N.Y.

    • Florida State, which came into the game 4-0, was knocked out rankings the week after the last time it appeared four years ago, and the Seminoles (4-1) will likely face the same fate next week after entering this season's top 25 for the first time this week.

      Owls freshman guard Quinton Rose played hero for Temple (3-2) on Thursday with a game-high 26 points and six rebounds. With Temple ahead by one point, he also snared the biggest board of the day with 1.5 seconds remaining following a potential go-ahead shot from Florida State freshman forward Jonathan Isaac that fell short.

      Temple's win Thursday propels them to the NIT Season Tip-Off Championship game Friday against the winner of Thursday's second game between No. 19 West Virginia and Illinois. Florida State will play the loser of that game earlier in the day Friday.

      Florida State was led for the fourth time in five games by guard Dwayne Bacon with 22 points, and Isaac added 19 points and a team-high seven rebounds in the game, which marked just the fifth meeting all-time between the Owls and Seminoles.

      Down 87-86 with 16 seconds left, Florida State got the ball to Bacon, who was tied up underneath the basket on his shot attempt by the Temple defense with four seconds remaining.

      Rose's 26 points were a career-high, but he was far from the only contributor in the Owls' comeback win. Guard Shizz Alston Jr. notched 22 points and three steals, and it was his 3-pointer with 6:51 remaining in the game that propelled Temple's to its first lead since the opening minutes of the game.

      Florida State built a 41-31 halftime lead on 50 percent shooting from the field, and the Florida State lead grew to as many as 18 points in the second half. But the Owls went on a 13-3 run with seven minutes remaining to slice into the deficit and set the stage for the comeback.

      Temple leading scorer, forward Obi Enechionyia, came on strong in the second half and finished with 16 points and eight rebounds to round out the Owls who finished in double figures. Enechionyia also recorded six blocks.

      Florida State guard Xavier Rathan-Mayes started hot and led the Seminoles at halftime with 11 points, but he didn't score in the second half. Rathan-Mayes did pace Florida State with six assists, and guard Terrance Man was Florida State's fourth double-digit scorer with 12 points.

      NOTES: Temple now leads the all-time series with Florida State 3-1, including three straight wins ... Before Saturday, they last met in 1999, with the Owls winning, 69-58 ... Temple shot 52.4 percent from 3-point range in Thursday's win (11 of 21) ... Shizz Alston also added three steals for the Owls ... Florida State continued to struggle from the free throw line, shooting 66 percent as a team Thursday, including two misses with under two minutes to play.

  • No. 23 Rhode Island hosts Belmont in another tune-up
    By The Sports Xchange / Thursday, November 24, 2016

    After having played five games and winning four of them in 10 days, No. 23 Rhode Island was anxious to get back to business as usual before hosting Belmont on Friday night.

    • "I'm proud of the guys and happy, obviously," coach Dan Hurley said after his Rams lost to No. 1 Duke in the final of the Hall of Fame Tip Off Tournament in Connecticut last Sunday.

      "We would have loved to have won today or least have a chance in the last minute or two, but the reality of it is, five games in 10 days, that's like an NBA schedule and then add into that ... we played a war, Cincinnati (in the semifinals) probably took a little bit from us today.

      "Not to make any excuses at all, but that was a taxing war we played with a high-level team and then to turn around and face the No. 1 team in the country; that was a tall task for us but, man, we learned a lot about ourselves this weekend about what we can be and we've got to kind of get cleaned up the next time, hopefully in March that we face somebody like this."

      The Rams started the season ranked 23rd, moved up to No. 21 and then dropped back to 23 after the loss. They now face a 1-2 Belmont team at home before a tough week next week -- at Valparaiso and at local rival Providence and the Dunkin Donuts Center in Providence.

      "Just proud of the way the guys play(ed) the whole weekend," Hurley said Sunday. "I think today was a tremendous learning experience for us that we can move on from."

      Belmont, picked preseason to win the Ohio Valley Conference, has lost to Vanderbilt and Florida and defeated Western Kentucky.

      At Florida, the Bruins, who are led in scoring (20.7 per game) and rebounding (8.3) by 6-foor-7 forward Evan Bradds, the OVC preseason player of the year, didn't score for the first 5:13 and fell behind 24-4 before making a game of it.

      A 3-point shooting team, they went 25-for-75 from behind the arc in the first two games but were just 7-for-27 against Florida.

      Now, they're on to URI.

      "Rhode Island presents a number of challenges for any opponent it faces," coach Eric Byrd said Wednesday. "In watching them on film, their individual talent and versatility jump off the screen. Their players play with great confidence."

      E.C. Matthews, who was handled by Duke's Grayson Allen and scored just nine points Sunday, leads the Rams in scoring at 17.4 points per game -- with four starter averaging in double figures through the first five games. Hassan Martin, who is scoring at a 13.6 per game clip, leads URI in rebounding with 7.4 boards per contest.

      "We beat an outstanding team," Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski said Sunday. "Danny, he hasn't built a team, he's built a program. They love one another, they play together ... it was such a competitive game."

  • Top 25 roundup: No. 4 North Carolina wins Maui
    By The Sports Xchange / Thursday, November 24, 2016

    LAHAINA, Hawaii -- Joel Berry II scored 22 points and Kennedy Meeks recorded a double-double, leading No. 4 North Carolina to a 71-56 victory over No. 16 Wisconsin in the championship game of the Maui Invitational on Wednesday night.

    • Meeks had 15 points and 16 rebounds for the Tar Heels (6-0). Isaiah Hicks had 14 points and five rebounds. Justin Jackson scored 12.

      Vitto Brown scored 15 points for the Badgers (4-2). Ethan Happ had 13 points, six rebounds, four assists and four steals.

      The game was played before a capacity crowd in a 2,400-seat arena with spectators packed into standing-room only areas in all corners of the building.

      Wisconsin got within six early in the second period, but the Tar Heels responded with a 16-3 run to take a 49-30 lead on a layup by Jackson midway through the half. They led by as many as 25 points late.

      No. 1 Kentucky 101, Cleveland State 70

      LEXINGTON, Ky. -- Kentucky improved to 5-0 with a victory over Cleveland State.

      With sophomore leader Isaiah Briscoe sidelined by a back injury, the freshman backcourt tandem of Malik Monk and De'Aaron Fox took control.

      Monk paced the Wildcats with 23 points, 19 coming in the first half. He made 8 of 12 field goals en route to tying his career high.

      Fox recorded 16 points and 11 assists. Three other players scored in double figures - freshman Bam Adebayo, 14 points; Mychal Mulder, 13; and freshman Wenyen Gabriel, 10.

      No. 2 Villanova 63, Charleston 47

      VILLANOVA, Pa. -- Josh Hart recorded 13 points and 11 rebounds, and Kris Jenkins scored 11 as Villanova defeated Charleston.

      Mikal Bridges and Eric Paschall contributed eight points each for the Wildcats (6-0), who were playing their sixth game in 13 days.

      Jenkins, who hit the winning shot in the national championship game last year against North Carolina, didn't start because he missed a class.

      Jarrell Brantley led the Cougars (3-3) with 18 points and seven rebounds.

      No. 6 Duke 88, William & Mary 67

      DURHAM, N.C. -- Frank Jackson poured in 19 points and Grayson Allen added 17 points as Duke opened a season-long, four-game homestand with a victory over William & Mary.

      Amile Jefferson's 15 points and 10 rebounds and guard Luke Kennard's 11 points gave the Blue Devils (5-1) a boost, and guard Matt Jones had 10 points. Duke shot 50 percent from the field.

      Jack Whitman and Daniel Dixon each scored 13 points for William & Mary (2-2).

      No. 10 Louisville 68, Old Dominion 62 (OT)

      PARADISE ISLAND, Bahamas -- Louisville hit 14 of 18 free throws in overtime to sink Old Dominion's upset bid in the first round of the Battle 4 Atlantis tournament.

      The Cardinals (4-0), who play Wichita State in Thursday's semifinals, got 18 points from junior guard Quentin Snider and 17 from sophomore guard Donovan Mitchell. The Monarchs (2-1) were led by Brandan Stith's 20 points and meet LSU in Thursday's consolation round.

      Louisville made 7 of 29 shots in the first half, and Old Dominion wasn't much better at 8 of 25. The shooting improved some in the second half to 32.3 percent for the Cardinals and 42.3 percent for the Monarchs.

      No. 13 Oregon 79, Connecticut 69

      LAHAINA, Hawaii -- Chris Boucher scored 21 points, including five three-pointers, to lead Oregon to victory Connecticut in the fifth-place game of the Maui Invitational.

      Tyler Dorsey added 19 points and guard Dylan Ennis had 15 for the Ducks (4-2). Oregon opened the tournament with a loss to unranked Georgetown before leaving with wins over Tennessee and UConn.

      Guard Jalen Adams scored 27 points to pace the Huskies (2-4).

      No. 17 Purdue 96, Auburn 71

      CANCUN, Mexico -- Caleb Swanigan and Isaac Haas each posted double-doubles and Purdue knocked down 17 3-pointers in a convincing victory over Auburn in the Cancun Challenge championship game.

      Swanigan finished with 14 points and 10 rebounds to record his fourth double-double in the Boilermakers' first five games. Haas had 10 points and 10 rebounds for Purdue (4-1).

      Danjel Purifoy scored 22 points to lead the Tigers (4-1). Mustapha Heron added 15 points, and T.J. Dunans came off the bench to contribute 10 points.

      No. 20 Baylor 71, VCU 63

      PARADISE ISLAND, Bahamas -- Johnathan Motley scored 19 points and grabbed 10 rebounds to lead Baylor to victory in the first round of the Battle 4 Atlantis tournament.

      Manu Lecomte and Al Freeman pitched in 16 and 15 points, respectively, for the Bears (4-0), who play No. 24 Michigan State in Thursday's semifinals.

      JeQuan Lewis scored 21 points, Ahmed Hamdy-Mohamed added 14 and Jonathan Williams 12 for the Rams (3-1), who play St. John's in Thursday's consolation round.

      No. 24 Michigan State 73, St. John's 62

      PARADISE ISLAND, Bahamas -- Miles Bridges had 22 points and 15 rebounds and Nassau native Lourawls "Tum Tum" Nairn scored a season-high 13 points to lead Michigan State past St. John's in the first round of the Battle 4 Atlantis tournament.

      Eron Harris added 14 points and seven rebounds and freshman Nick Ward had nine points and 11 rebounds for the Spartans (3-2), who advance to meet No. 20 Baylor in Thursday's semifinals. Michigan State shot 43.1 percent from the field and dominated the Red Storm on the boards 54-33.

      Freshman Marcus LoVett had 20 points and seven rebounds for St. John's (2-2), which plays VCU in Thursday's consolation round.