NCAA Tournament Capsules Print
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Thursday, 20 March 2008 11:57
NCAAB Headline News


 ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) -Jerel McNeal scored 20 points and Wesley Matthews hit eight free throws in the final 31 seconds to help Marquette beat Kentucky 74-66 in the first round of the South Regional on Thursday.
The Golden Eagles overcame 35 points by Kentucky senior Joe Crawford, who matched a career high before fouling out. Ramel Bradley added 19 for the Wildcats (18-13).
Sixth-seeded Marquette (25-9) earned its first NCAA tournament victory since 2003, when it beat Kentucky in the regional final to go to the Final Four.
Kentucky cut it to 66-63 on Crawford's 3-pointer from the top of the key with 38 seconds left. After Matthews hit two free throws, Bradley hit a 3-pointer from the corner to get the Wildcats within two with 22 seconds remaining.
Matthews made two more free throws, then stole the ball and hit two more to ice the game.
Pittsburgh 82, Oral Roberts 63
DENVER (AP) - Levance Fields scored 23 points, Sam Young finished with 14 and Pittsburgh won its sixth straight game.
Fourth-seeded Pitt (27-9) is making its seventh straight NCAA tournament appearance, though none of those previous teams have made it past the third round.
This team looks different, though - coming off the Big East tournament championship and playing its best basketball of the season in March, for once, instead of January or February.
Next up, an intriguing matchup Saturday against fifth-seeded Michigan State, a team with a big-and-brawny reputation much like Pitt's.
Robert Jarvis had 16 points for the Golden Eagles (24-9), who won the Summit League tourny to make their third straight trip to the NCAAs. Andre Hardy added 15 and Moses Ehambe 13.
Michigan State 72, Temple 61
DENVER (AP) - Raymar Morgan led a balanced attack with 15 points and Michigan State advanced despite a sudden shooting slump from spark plug Drew Neitzel.
Last year, Neitzel was the Spartans' only option on offense. Now, he's got scorers swarming all around. Chris Allen scored 12 points and fellow freshmen Kalin Lucas and Durrell Summers each added eight for fifth-seeded Michigan State (26-8).
Mark Tyndale scored 16 points for Temple (21-13). Dionte Christmas, the Owls' leading scorer, was limited to three points, 17 below his average, on 1-of-12 shooting.
Neitzel, who averages 14.2 points, scored just five points on 2-of-11 shooting.
Midwest Regional
Kansas 85, Portland State 61
OMAHA, Neb. (AP) - Brandon Rush scored 18 points and everyone wearing blue had a blast, as top-seeded Kansas began its NCAA tournament with a rout of overmatched Portland.
Kansas' five seniors and Rush, a junior star who might be headed to the NBA, are determined to go out in style after some bitter disappointments in the tournament.
The Jayhawks still remember being knocked off two straight years in the opening round, losing stunners to 14th-seeded Bucknell in 2005 and No. 13 Bradley in '06. Last year, they were within one victory of the Final Four but lost to UCLA in the regional finals.
The Jayhawks (32-3) led all the way against the Vikings (23-10), 22-point underdogs who simply didn't have enough weapons to cope with the size, depth and skill of a Big 12 powerhouse.
UNLV 71, Kent St. 58
OMAHA, Neb. (AP) - Joe Darger scored 18 points and UNLV tied an NCAA tournament record by holding Kent State to just 10 points in the first half.
The Mid-American Conference champions averaged a turnover a minute the better part of the first half, went almost 8 minutes without a point and trailed 31-10 at halftime. And that was with UNLV shooting under 40 percent and committing nine turnovers of its own.
The 10 points were the fewest since Wake Forest scored that many against Butler in 2001.
Darger made four 3-pointers and Wink Adams scored 17 for UNLV (27-7).
Mike Scott led Kent State (28-7) with 14 points and 10 rebounds.
West Regional
Xavier 73, Georgia 61
WASHINGTON (AP) - Derrick Brown's 19 points and 11 rebounds led a balanced-as-usual offense, and No. 3-seeded Xavier avoided a big upset by rallying to overcome fading Georgia.
Super-sub Josh Duncan scored 20 for the Musketeers (28-6), who trailed by as many as 11 in the second half but conjured up a 22-6 run to come back. Xavier used a significant discrepancy in free throws - 27-for-33 against 3-for-5 for Georgia - and tied a school record for wins.
Terrance Woodbury had 16 points and do-everything guard Sundiata Gaines' finished with 13 for Georgia (17-17), which could not sustain the energy it summoned during last week's run to the SEC tournament title. The Bulldogs were 13-16 before the conference tourney, yet somehow won four games in as many days to save coach Dennis Felton's job and extend their season.
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