USC rallies again, knocks out SMU


Associated Press



USC’s De’Anthony Melton drives past SMU’s Semi Ojeleye for a shot in Friday’s first-round NCAA Tournament game in Tulsa, Okla.


Tony Gutierrez | AP photo


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    TULSA, Okla. — Elijah Stewart hit a late 3-pointer for No. 11 seed Southern California as the Trojans upset sixth seeded SMU 66-65 Friday in the first round of the NCAA Tournament’s East Regional.

    SMU’s Shake Milton missed a floater at the buzzer.

    Stewart had 22 points for the Trojans (26-9). Bennie Boatright and Chimezie Metu each added 14 for USC, which advances to play Baylor in the second round of the East region on Sunday.

    USC also rallied from a big deficit in the second half in its First Four win over Providence.

    Baylor 91,

    New Mexico State 73

    TULSA, Okla. — Al Freeman came off the bench to score 21 points, and No. 3 seed Baylor defeated No. 14 seed New Mexico State in the East Regional.

    Jo Lual-Acuil scored 16 points and Johnathan Motley added 15 points and 10 rebounds for the Bears (26-7), who were upset in the first round by Georgia State and Yale the previous two years.

    Ian Baker and Braxton Huggins each scored 19 points for New Mexico State (28-6).

    Duke 87, Troy 65

    GREENVILLE, S.C. — Grayson Allen had 21 points off five 3-pointers, Jayson Tatum had 18 points and 12 rebounds, and second-seeded Duke continued its perfect postseason with a win to start the East Region.

    The Blue Devils (29-7) became the first team to win four games on the way to the Atlantic Coast Conference Tournament crown last week. They kept up that pace in blowing past the 15th-seeded Trojans (22-15).

    MIDWEST REGION

    Rhode Island 84,

    Creighton 72

    SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Jeff Dowtin scored a career-high 23 points with a perfect day at the free-throw line, upstart Rhode Island answered every threat and the Rams ran right into the second round by stunning cold-shooting No. 6 seed Creighton.

    Kuran Iverson scored 17 points and Hassan Martin had 12 points and eight rebounds as 11th-seeded Rhode Island (25-9) earned its ninth straight victory. The program won an NCAA Tournament game for the first time since advancing to the Elite Eight and losing to Stanford in 1998.

    Oregon 93, Iona 77

    SACRAMENTO, Calif.— With star big man Chris Boucher cheering in a bulky knee brace from the sidelines, Tyler Dorsey scored 24 points to lead four players in double figures, and No. 3 seed Oregon beat 14th-seeded Iona.

    The Ducks (30-5) showed they have depth and sheer athleticism to make a special March run, just as coach Dana Altman hoped this week when he challenged role players to make larger contributions in shot-blocker Boucher’s absence.

    Louisville 78,

    Jacksonville State 63

    INDIANAPOLIS — Mangok Mathiang scored 18 points and Deng Adel added 16 to help second-seeded Louisville pull away for an opening-round win.

    The Cardinals (25-8) have won five straight opening round games. Louisville was making its first postseason appearance since 2015 after sitting out last year because of a one-year, school-imposed postseason ban for alleged recruiting violations.

    Kansas 100,

    UC Davis 62

    TULSA, Okla. — Frank Mason III scored 22 points and had eight assists as top-seeded Kansas won its opening game of the NCAA Tournament for an 11th straight year.

    Freshman Josh Jackson, making his return after a one-game suspension for an accumulation of embarrassing incidents, added 17 points on 8-of-12 shooting for the Jayhawks (29-5).

    The win ensures top seeds will remain perfect since the tournament expanded, with the schools now 132-0 against No. 16 seeds.

    SOUTH REGION

    North Carolina 103,

    Texas Southern 64

    GREENVILLE, S.C. — Justin Jackson broke out of a shooting slump with 21 points to help top-seeded North Carolina roll past Texas Southern.

    The ACC player of the year had made just 20 of 60 shots (33 percent) and 7 of 31 3-pointers (23 percent) in his last four games. But he had 19 points by halftime in this one, helping the Tar Heels (28-7) quickly eliminate any chance of an unprecedented upset.

    Jackson, a 6-foot-8 junior, finished 8 of 13 from the field and 5 of 8 from 3-point range with seven rebounds.

    Wichita State 64,

    Dayton 58

    INDIANAPOLIS — Wichita State’s high-flying offense didn’t get off the ground until the closing minutes, when the Shockers played like the more tournament-experienced team and pulled away from Dayton.

    The 10th-seeded Shockers (31-4) won their 16th in a row — the second-longest streak in school history — by clamping down on defense and swatting away shots down the stretch. Wichita State blocked eight shots and held the seventh-seeded Flyers (24-8) to a season-low 31 percent from the field.

    Cincinnati 75,

    Kansas State 61

    SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Troy Caupain scored 23 points, Kyle Washington added 16 and defensive-minded Cincinnati shot its way past Kansas State.

    The Bearcats (30-5) took care of their business and the No. 6 jinx — Maryland, Creighton and SMU all lost to No. 11 seeds — with an impressive shooting display, shooting 62 percent. Cincinnati is known for its defense and did that, too, preventing Kansas State (21-14) from making much of a run after building a 17-point lead.

    USC’s De’Anthony Melton drives past SMU’s Semi Ojeleye for a shot in Friday’s first-round NCAA Tournament game in Tulsa, Okla.
    http://timesleader.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/web1_usc-smu.jpgUSC’s De’Anthony Melton drives past SMU’s Semi Ojeleye for a shot in Friday’s first-round NCAA Tournament game in Tulsa, Okla. Tony Gutierrez | AP photo

    Associated Press

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