College basketball highlights: UCLA knocks off No. 4 Arizona

March 16, 2014 

ACC Pittsburgh Virginia Basketball

Virginia's Akil Mitchell, center, was tied up by Pittsburgh's Michael Young, left, and Talib Zanna during the first half. Virginia won 51-48.

WESLEY BROOME — AP

Kyle Anderson had 21 points and 15 rebounds, Jordan Adams hit a huge three-pointer in the final minute, and UCLA outlasted No. 4 Arizona 75-71 in a spirited Pac-12 championship game on Saturday.

The Pac-12's two best teams during the regular season, UCLA (26-8) and Arizona (30-4) put on a show in the tournament finals in Las Vegas, trading big plays and floor burns.

Offense ruled the first half and defense the second until Adams dropped in his contested three-pointer to put the Bruins up 71-68 with 45 seconds left.

David Wear and Norman Powell combined to hit four free throws down the stretch, giving UCLA the Pac-12 title in its first year under Coach Steve Alford.

"This gives us the confidence that we not only can play with anybody, but beat anybody," Alford said. "But you've got to get hot and stay hot."

Nick Johnson had 22 points and Kaleb Tarczewski added 12 for Arizona, which may have lost out on a No. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament with the loss.

America East

Albany 69, Stony Brook 60: Albany (18-14) scored 23 of the final 31 points to defeat host Stony Brook (23-10) in the America East championship game and earn its second consecutive NCAA Tournament berth. Sam Rowley led Albany with 18 points despite fouling out with 7 minutes left and his team trailing by six points.

Atlantic 10

No. 23 VCU 74, George Washington 55: Treveon Graham scored 22 points and VCU (26-7) pressed and pressured its way into another conference tournament championship game, beating George Washington (24-8) in the Atlantic 10 semifinals in New York. The second-seeded Rams will play for the A-10 title for the second year in a row under Coach Shaka Smart, facing fourth-seeded St. Joseph's on Sunday.

Saint Joseph's 67, St. Bonaventure 48: Halil Kanacevic had 26 points and 17 rebounds, and Saint Joseph's (23-9) reached the finals of the Atlantic 10 Tournament for the first time since 2008 with a win over St. Bonaventure (18-15). Ninth-seeded St. Bonaventure stunned No. 18 Saint Louis in the quarterfinals, but a day after several huge shots fell through, the Bonnies couldn't find the basket. They went 8½ minutes without a field goal in the second half.

Atlantic Coast

No. 6 Virginia 51, Pittsburgh 48: Anthony Gill hit two free throws with 8.5 seconds left to help Virginia hold off Pittsburgh in the Atlantic Coast Conference Tournament semifinals, sending the Cavaliers to their first championship game in 20 years. Virginia (27-6) will play No. 7 Duke on Sunday.

Virginia arrived in Greensboro, N.C., with its first outright regular-season title since 1981 and only its second No. 1 seed. The Cavs have just one title: the 1976 championship led by tournament most valuable player Wally Walker.

Pitt (25-9) had a chance to tie with 4 seconds left, but Justin Anderson tipped James Robinson's three-pointer to Gill with 0.5 seconds left.

No. 7 Duke 75, N.C. State 67: Jabari Parker scored 20 points and Duke (26-7) beat North Carolina State (21-13) to reach the ACC Tournament finals. Rasheed Sulaimon added 16 points for the third-seeded Blue Devils while Rodney Hood had 14 points and keyed the defensive effort against ACC player of the year T.J. Warren.

Big 12

No. 16 Iowa State 74, Baylor 65: DeAndre Kane scored 17 points, Georges Niang added 13 and Iowa State (26-7) rallied to beat Baylor (24-11) to win its first Big 12 Tournament title since 2000. The fourth-seeded Cyclones knocked off top-seeded Kansas in the semifinals before ending the Bears' tournament run.

Big East

Providence 65, No. 14 Creighton 56: Bryce Cotton scored 23 points and Providence (23-11) won its first Big East Tournament title since 1994 with a great defensive effort against Doug McDermott and No. 14 Creighton (26-7). The fourth-seeded Friars used a 2-3 zone to hold the second-seeded Bluejays 24 points below their season average and to an 8-for-30 effort from behind the three-point line. McDermott, who came in leading the nation in scoring with a 26.5 average, finished 10-for-19 from the field, including 5-for-12 from three-point range, for 27 points.

Big Sky

Weber State 88, North Dakota 67: Kyle Tresnak scored 27 points and Davion Berry added 19 to help Weber State (19-11) beat North Dakota (17-16) for the Big Sky Tournament championship in Ogden, Utah, and an automatic NCAA berth. The Wildcats clinched their first NCAA Tournament spot since 2007. North Dakota shot just 39.3 percent from the field and trailed by double digits almost the entire second half.

Big Ten

No. 22 Michigan State 83, No. 12 Wisconsin 75: Adreian Payne scored 18 points, Branden Dawson had 14 and Michigan State (25-8) beat Wisconsin (26-7) to reach the Big Ten Tournament championship in Indianapolis. The third-seeded Spartans won consecutive games for the first time since winning 11 straight in a stretch over December and January. They will face No. 8 Michigan, the league's regular-season champ, in the finals Sunday.

No. 8 Michigan 72, No. 24 Ohio State 69: Michigan (25-7) blew a 12-point second-half lead, then finished the game on a 7-1 run to beat Ohio State (25-9) in the Big Ten Tournament semifinals. Nik Stauskas had 18 points to lead the Wolverines, winners of seven straight.

Conference USA

Tulsa 69, Louisiana Tech 60: Danny Manning is taking Tulsa back to the NCAA Tournament. James Woodard scored 27 points to lead the Golden Hurricane (21-12) to its first NCAA berth since 2003 with a victory against Louisiana Tech (27-7) in the Conference USA Tournament finals in El Paso, Texas. Tulsa — led by second-year head coach Danny Manning, who won an NCAA title playing for Kansas in 1988 — will carry an 11-game win streak into the tournament.

Mid-American

Western Michigan 98, Toledo 77: David Brown scored 32 points, Tucker Haymond added 21 and Western Michigan (23-9) earned its first trip to the NCAA Tournament in 10 years by beating Toledo (27-6) in the Mid-American Conference championship in Cleveland. Toledo set a school record for wins this season, but its hopes of making the NCAA field for the first time since 1980 hinged on winning this tourney.

Mid-Eastern Athletic

N.C. Central 71, Morgan St. 62: Jeremy Ingram scored 29 points and N.C. Central (28-5) used an 8-1 run to get some separation and held on to beat Morgan State (15-16) in the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference championship in Norfolk, Va. N.C. Central, a former Division II power, won its 20th consecutive game and claimed the league's automatic NCAA tournament berth in only its third season at the Division I level. Ian Chiles scored 26 to lead Morgan State, appearing in the championship for the sixth time in eight seasons under Coach Todd Bozeman.

Mountain West

No. 20 New Mexico 64, No. 8 San Diego State 58: Cameron Bairstow scored 17 points to lead New Mexico (27-6) to a victory over San Diego State (29-4) in the Mountain West Conference championship game in Las Vegas, giving the Lobos the automatic NCAA Tournament berth.

Sun Belt

Georgia State 72, Arkansas State 45: Kentucky transfer Ryan Harrow scored 20 points and R.J. Hunter had 16 as top-seeded Georgia State (25-7) routed fourth-seeded Arkansas State (19-13) in the semifinals of the Sun Belt Conference Tournament in New Orleans. Harrow was 9 of 14 from the field and Hunter made three three-pointers. Georgia State, which has won 22 of its last 23 games, will play Louisiana-Lafayette on Sunday.

WKU women win Sun Belt

Western Kentucky 61, Arkansas State 60: Chastity Gooch had 26 points, 12 rebounds and three blocked shots to lead WKU to the Sun Belt Tournament title. Western finished the game on an 18-4 run to earn the NCAA bid.

Around the nation

Pac-12: Pac-12 Commissioner Larry Scott would like the NBA to change its rules to prevent players from leaving after one season of college basketball. Speaking before Saturday's Pac-12 championship game, Scott said the NBA's one-and-done rule, which was put in place to prevent players from skipping college to go directly to the pros, prevents student-athletes from having an education and experiencing college athletics. Scott said he would like there to be an age limit of 21 before turning pro.

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