Men's Basketball

College basketball notes: Lehigh, Long Island earn NCAA Tournament bids

Lehigh's 
C.J. McCollum  was defended by Bucknell's Bryan Cohen during the first half of the Patriot League Tournament championship. McCollum scored 29 points to lead Lehigh to an 82-77 win and an automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament.
Lehigh's C.J. McCollum was defended by Bucknell's Bryan Cohen during the first half of the Patriot League Tournament championship. McCollum scored 29 points to lead Lehigh to an 82-77 win and an automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament. AP

Gabe Knutson blocked Cameron Ayers' baseline layup attempt with 7 seconds left and C.J. McCollum scored 29 points to help Lehigh hold off host Bucknell 82-77 on Wednesday night to win the Patriot League Tournament.

After Mackey McKnight missed two foul shots, the Bison trailed 78-77 and had a chance to take the lead, but couldn't get the ball into leading scorer Mike Muscala.

McCollum and Jordan Hamilton each hit two foul shots in the final 4 seconds, and Lehigh (26-7) began celebrating after clinching its second trip to the NCAA Tournament in three seasons.

This one will be especially sweet for Lehigh after beating Bucknell (24-9) on its home floor. Lehigh rarely flinched behind league player of the year McCollum, who hit an array of tough shots to help withstand Bucknell's second-half rally from an 11-point deficit.

Muscala finished with 30 points for Bucknell.

LIU 90, Robert Morris 73: Julian Boyd scored 18 points, Jason Brickman had 11 assists and Long Island University's fast-breaking Blackbirds made it two straight Northeast Conference championships with a victory against Robert Morris in New York.

In a rematch of last season's NEC title-game thriller, Boyd and the Blackbirds (25-8) didn't need overtime to fend off the Colonials (24-10) this year and earn another NCAA bid. And they drew New York's most famous basketball fan to their little gym on Flatbush Avenue in Brooklyn.

Spike Lee jumped from his seat, arms raised, when Boyd hit a three-pointer that put LIU up 68-54 with 6:20 left.

Velton Jones, RMU's leading scorer, was knocked hard to the floor in the opening minutes and appeared to come away with sore ribs. He played most of the game and scored 10 points, though he shot 3-for-12.

Women

Jamestown (N.D.) 62-, Union 42: Jamestown rolled over Union in the opening round of the NAIA Women's National Tournament in Sioux City, Iowa.

The Lady Bulldogs (25-8) held the nation's third-best offense to only 60 points, but scored little themselves and were outrebounded 53-33.

Union star Lindsey Waters was in foul trouble the entire game. She missed the final eight minutes of the first half and fouled out with 8:57 to go. She played only 16 minutes and had only four points and six rebounds.

Brooke Hill led Union with a game-high 12 points and six rebounds.

Union hit less than 30 percent of its shots. Jamestown hit 34 percent.

Arizona suspends freshman

Arizona point guard Josiah Turner has been suspended indefinitely for violating team rules, the second time this season the freshman has been suspended. The Wildcats open the Pac-12 Tournament on Thursday after having a bye in the first round. Turner, who averaged 6.8 points in 29 games, did not accompany the team to the tournament. He was suspended for a game against Florida in December for violating team rules.

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