|Wild finishes ruin possible Purdue-Indiana matchup at Big Ten tourney|
|Written by Admin|
|Friday, 14 March 2008 22:40|
A shocking last-second shot and a big-time individual effort in Friday's quarterfinals ended those hopes.
Minnesota's Blake Hoffarber caught a long pass with 1.5 seconds left, spun away from a defender and hit a 14-foot left-handed shot at the buzzer as the Golden Gophers upset No. 22 Indiana 59-58.
``It almost felt like I was about to have a heart attack,'' Damian Johnson, who led Minnesota with 17 points, said. ``My heart just dropped. I ran straight to Blake and jumped on the pile. It was very exciting.''
Eric Gordon, who scored 16 points for Indiana (25-7), which was in shock after the game.
``It was a crazy catch,'' he said. ``There were three players going right after the ball. It got tipped. Hoffarber just caught it and threw it in.''
Travis Busch, who threw the 75-foot pass to Hoffarber from the opposite baseline, said the play will mean more if the sixth-seeded Gophers can continue to advance.
``If we can just get the job done and win the whole tournament, it would be even better,'' Bush said. ``I think it's a big momentum boost for us.''
Minnesota (20-12) will play 10th-seeded Illinois in a semifinal Saturday. Demetri McCamey scored 26 points, and the Fighting Illini beat No. 17 Purdue 74-67 in overtime.
The Gophers will try to end a 19-game losing skid against the Illini (15-18).
``We owe them,'' Busch said. ``We have a chip on our shoulder. We want to win. We want to prove to everybody that we belong. Hopefully, we can end the streak.''
In the other semifinal Saturday, top-seeded Wisconsin will play fourth-seeded Michigan State. Wisconsin beat Michigan 51-34, and Michigan State beat Ohio State 67-60 in the quarterfinals.
McCamey, a freshman guard, made 9 of 14 field goals and all six of his 3-point shots against Purdue (24-8). He answered coach Bruce Weber's call for someone to elevate their game.
``Like coach said, we needed somebody to be special, and fortunately, I was that player,'' McCamey said. ``My teammates helped me out a lot.''
Illinois led Purdue 67-66 in overtime when Mike Davis got a perfect pass from McCamey and scored on a backdoor cut to make it 69-66. On Illinois' next possession, Davis rebounded McCamey's miss and scored on an acrobatic putback to make it 71-66 with a minute left.
Purdue didn't make another field goal. The Boilermakers missed their last 12 shots, including all 10 in overtime.
E'Twaun Moore scored 22 points and Robbie Hummel added 10 points and 11 rebounds for second-seeded Purdue.
Wisconsin 51, Michigan 34
Joe Krabbenhoft scored 12 points and Michael Flowers keyed No. 8 Wisconsin offensively and defensively in the Badgers' ugly victory over Michigan. It was the lowest-scoring game in Big Ten tournament history.
The previous low was 89 points, scored by Michigan and Minnesota in the first round last year. Michigan's 34 points were also the fewest ever by a team, falling short of the 40 scored last year by Minnesota.
Wisconsin (27-4) shot 34 percent for the game. Brian Butch, the Badgers' leading scorer, was limited by foul trouble and finished with a season-low one point.
Flowers finished with 11 points, but it was his defense that really stood out. He completely flustered Michigan's leading scorer, Manny Harris, who managed only four points on 1-of-12 shooting.
Michigan (10-22) had more turnovers (14) than field goals (10).
Michigan State 67, Ohio State 60
Drew Neitzel scored 28 points and Travis Walton hit five free throws in the final minute to help No. 19 Michigan State hold off Ohio State.
Neitzel hit six 3-pointers against the Buckeyes' zone, but the Spartans (25-7) couldn't pull away until late in the game with a 3-pointer by Durrell Summers, a steal by Neitzel and another basket by Summers. Ohio State managed only one free throw over a span of more than four minutes, and the Spartans took their biggest lead at nine points during the late string of free throws by Walton, his only points of the game.
Kosta Koufos scored 19 points and David Lighty had 12 for fifth-seeded Ohio State (19-13), which won the conference tournament last year.