Men’s NCAA Tournament Roundup: No. 11 Syracuse outlasts No. 6 TCU, 57-52
DETROIT (AP) — Marek Dolezaj scored 17 points before fouling out and 11th-seeded Syracuse shut down sixth-seeded TCU for a 57-52 victory in the Midwest Region of the NCAA Tournament on Friday night.
The Orange (22-13) won for the second time in the tournament and advanced to face third-seeded Michigan State on Sunday by holding off the Horned Frogs with another impressive defensive effort. Both teams shot under 40 percent from the field.
TCU (21-12) is still without an NCAA Tournament victory since 1987, when coach Jamie Dixon was a player. This was the school’s first appearance since 1998, and it was short-lived.
There was little doubt who won the much-anticipated matchup between TCU’s excellent offense and Syracuse’s zone defense.
The Horned Frogs were held 31 points below their season average.
Syracuse led 50-49 before mid-range shots by Tyus Battle and Frank Howard pushed the lead to five. That margin was plenty in this game.
A tight, compelling contest throughout, the game nevertheless had an odd feel, with Little Caesars Arena having mostly emptied out after the Michigan State-Bucknell game.
TCU and Syracuse played in front of a handful of fans who at times seemed as interested in periodic Virginia-UMBC updates as what was going on in front of them on the court.
TCU struggled offensively throughout, but the Horned Frogs did score eight straight points to finish the first half with a 28-27 lead.
Michigan State 82, Bucknell 78
DETROIT — Miles Bridges outlasted Zach Thomas, scoring 29 points and grabbing nine rebounds to help second-seeded Michigan State hold on for a win over Bucknell in the first round of the NCAA Tournament.
Michigan State’s Cassius Winston scored 11 points and Nick Ward had eight points, surviving a scare after tumbling onto his head.
Nana Foulland scored 20 points and Kimball Mackenzie had 10 points for the Bison.
Auburn 62, College of Charleston 58
SAN DIEGO — Jared Harper made a clutch 3-pointer with 1:17 to go — his only basket of the game — and Auburn held off No. 13 seed College of Charleston in a Midwest Region thriller to avoid becoming the second No. 4 seed upset at Viejas Arena.
Auburn, playing under the cloud of a federal investigation into corruption in college basketball, overcame a horrible shooting performance to win in its first NCAA Tournament appearance since 2003. But it survived in part because Charleston committed 21 turnovers.
Mustapha Heron scored 16 points for Auburn (26-7), which shot only 35.6 percent overall (21 of 59) and just 20.8 percent from 3-point range (5 of 24).
Jarrell Brantley scored a game-high 24 points for Charleston, and Grant Riller added 16.
Purdue 74, Cal State Fullerton 48
DETROIT — Purdue center Isaac Haas broke his right elbow during a win over Cal State Fullerton and will miss the rest of the NCAA Tournament.
The 7-foot-2, 290-pound senior went down while taking a hard foul midway through the second half.
Haas, who averaged 14.7 points and 5.7 rebounds per game, had nine points and 10 rebounds in the first-round victory.
The second-seeded Boilermakers (29-6) will play Butler on Sunday.
Kyle Allman scored 21 for the Titans (20-12).
Marshall 81, Wichita State 75
SAN DIEGO — Jon Elmore scored 27 points and 13th-seeded Marshall toppled fourth-seeded Wichita State for its first NCAA Tournament victory.
The Thundering Herd (25-10) had been 0-5 in the tourney, with its last appearance in 1987.
Marshall became the second No. 13 seed to win this week. Buffalo did it Thursday night, beating Arizona.
Conner Frankamp scored 27 points for Wichita State (25-8).
West Virginia 85, Murray State 68
SAN DIEGO — Jevon Carter scored 21 points, had eight assists and six steals as No. 5 seed West Virginia overwhelmed 12th-seeded Murray State.
The Mountaineers (25-10) advanced to the round of 32 for the third time in the past four seasons.
Next up for West Virginia is a Mountain State showdown with 13th-seeded Marshall far away from home.
Terrell Miller scored 27 points for Murray State (26-6).
Butler 79, Arkansas 62
DETROIT — Kelan Martin scored 27 points and Kamar Baldwin added 24 to lift 10th-seeded Butler over seventh-seeded Arkansas.
The Bulldogs (21-13) raced to a 21-2 lead in the opening minutes.
Although Arkansas wiped out that entire deficit before halftime, Butler took control again early in the second.
The Bulldogs now play an in-state rival, second-seeded Purdue.
Jaylen Barford scored 15 points for Arkansas (23-12).
Kansas State 69, Creighton 59
CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Barry Brown scored 18 points and ninth-seeded Kansas State posted a wire-to-wire victory over No. 8 Creighton despite playing without leading scorer Dean Wade.
Mike McGuirl added 17 points and Kamau Stokes had 11 as the Wildcats won a first-round NCAA Tournament game for the first time since 2012.
Wade had been expected to play after suffering a stress fracture in the quarterfinals of the Big 12 Tournament, but never got on the floor. His teammates picked him up, particularly on defense.
Creighton came into the game ranked 10th in scoring in Division I at 84.3 points per game, but the Wildcats (23-11) limited the Bluejays to 59 points, tying their season low.
Creighton (21-12) shot just 33.8 percent from the field, including 26 percent from beyond the 3-point arc.
Cincinnati 68, Georgia State 53
NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Jarron Cumberland set career highs of 27 points and 11 rebounds as Cincinnati recovered after blowing a 10-point lead in the second half.
The second-seeded Bearcats (31-4) advanced to play seventh-seeded Nevada.
After trailing 42-32 early in the second half, 15th-seeded Georgia State (24-11) rallied to take a pair of one-point leads, its last one coming on a driving bank shot from D’Marcus Simonds with 9:30 left.
Nevada 87, Texas 83, OT
NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Caleb Martin scored 18 points and made two huge 3-pointers in overtime as Nevada rallied for its first NCAA Tournament victory since 2007.
Nevada (28-7) erased a 14-point, second-half deficit and tied it at 68 when Jordan Caroline hit one of two free throws with 3.8 seconds left in regulation.
The Wolf Pack trailed by four early in an overtime period that featured 34 total points.
Kerwin Roach II had a career-high 26 points for Texas (19-15).
North Carolina 84, Lipscomb 66
CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Kenny Williams scored 18 points and defending national champion North Carolina took its time before opening up to beat Lipscomb.
Theo Pinson had 15 points and flirted with a triple-double for the second-seeded Tar Heels (26-10). North Carolina next plays Texas A&M.
Playing for the first time in the NCAA tourney, the 15th-seeded Bisons (23-10) held an early six-point edge.
They led 33-31 with under four minutes left in the first half before North Carolina went on a 12-1 run to take control by the break.
Texas A&M 73, Providence 69
CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Admon Gilder scored 18 points to help Texas A&M hold off Providence.
Robert Williams and Tyler Davis both had double-doubles for the seventh-seeded Aggies (21-12). The teams were tied at 50 with about 9 minutes left but Texas A&M responded with a 12-2.
Rodney Bullock scored 22 points for the 10th-seeded Friars (21-14).
Xavier 102, Texas Southern 83
NASHVILLE, Tenn. — The Xavier Musketeers looked every bit like a No. 1 seed their first time around in the role at an NCAA Tournament.
J.P. Macura scored 18 of his career-high 29 points in the first half, and Xavier routed No. 16 seed Texas Southern in their tournament opener in the West Region.
The Musketeers (29-5) will play either No. 9 seed Florida State or eighth-seeded Missouri on Sunday for a berth in the Sweet 16.
Trevon Bluiett added 26 points, and Kerem Kanter had 24 for the Big East’s regular season champs.
Damontrae Jefferson scored 20 points to lead five Tigers in double figures. Derrick Bruce added 18, Robert Lewis had 14, Donte Clark scored 12 and Trayvon Reed had 10.