Thursday, November 17, 2011

11/17 Thursday's Shootaround: Long Beach State wins, wild finish in Stillwater

Long Beach State 86, No. 9 Pitt 76: See here.

Wild finishes:

Oklahoma State 90, UT-San Antonio 85 OT: This was an insane finish to regulation. UTSA, who advanced to the second round of the Preseason NIT on a 40 foot running prayer last night, used a 21-8 run last in the second half to open up a 71-60 lead with just 2:12 left. But Oklahoma State was able to crawl their way back into it as they forced some turnovers and got to the foul line. With 15 seconds left and down by six, freshman reserve Cesar Guerrero went the length of the court and scored on an and-one. After hitting the free throw, Guerrero stole the inbounds pass and buried a three to force OT:

Guerrero would scored eight points in the extra period, including back-to-back threes in the final two minutes to erase a four point deficit. On the game, he had 29 points while coming off the bench.

NC State 60, Princeton 58: Doug Davis hit a three-pointer with 22 seconds left that tied the game at 58, but on the ensuing possession, DeShawn Painter buried an 18-footer from the top of the key to give the Wolfpack the lead. On the ensuing inbounds, Princeton threw the ball into a double-team, and while it didn't result in a turnover, the Tigers took too much time and were forced to throw up a 70 foot prayer that was off the mark. NC State struggled without CJ Leslie, but the good news is that Lorenzo Brown looked terrific, going for 16 points, eight assists, five boards and five steals.

Indiana 94, Evansville 73: The first half of this game was one of the best that Indiana has played since Tom Crean became the head coach. In the same arena where the Purple Aces had knocked off Butler four days earlier, the Hoosiers jumped out to a 51-27 lead at the break, coasting for the final 20 minutes to the 21 point victory. Verdell Jones led four players in double figures with 17 points, to go along with seven assists, five boards and (perhaps most importantly) only eight shots from the field. Christian Watford, who had struggled in Indiana's first two games, added 15 points and eight boards while Cody Zeller chipped in with 14 points and nine boards.

New Mexico State 62, New Mexico 53: New Mexico was thought by many to be the favorite in the Mountain West conference, but after losing to heated rival NMSU at home, the Lobos look like they may have more questions than answers at this point. The biggest question mark? How are the Lobos going to replace Dairese Gary. Kendell Williams was thought by many to be the answer as a playmaker, but he struggled mightily against the Aggies, finishing with five turnovers while shooting 0-9 from the field. Drew Gordon wasn't much better. Thought by many to be a contender for the MWC player of the year award, Gordon finished with just two points while shooting 0-4 from the field in 21 foul-plagued minutes. Wendell McKines finished with 14 points and nine boards for NMSU. The game turned midway through the second half when a Demetrius Walker intentional foul led to a four point possession for NMSU, sparking an 8-0 run that game the Aggies a 50-45 lead.

Creighton 70, UAB 60: The Bluejays are the favorites to win the Missouri Valley this season, and they sure played like it on Wednesday night. Creighton into Birmingham and knocked off a rebuilding -- but still solid -- Blazer team on the strength of 27 points and seven boards from Doug McDermott. Greg Echenique added 10 boards, Antoine Young 13 points and Grant Gibbs seven assists without a turnover. Late in the second half, Creighton went on a 20-5 run that turned a 48-44 deficit into a 64-53 lead.

Arkansas 91, Oakland 68: So much for my upset pick. The Razorbacks man-handled Oakland, jumping out to a 55-27 halftime lead. Marshon Powell led six players in double figures with 20 points, adding seven boards. He had 18 in the first half on 8-8 shooting. BJ Young added 16 points.

The rest of the top 25:

- No. 13 Wisconsin 68, Colgate 41: Ben Brust scored 13 of his career-high 17 points in the first half, hitting four of Wisconsin's eight threes, as the Badgers opened up a 42-20 lead at the break and cruised from there. Jordan Taylor had a slow night -- nine points, seven boards and four assists on just 3-10 shooting. Wisconsin has now given up just 72 points in their first two games combined.

- No. 24 Florida State 79, Stetson 66: Bernard James had 15 points, 11 boards and two blocks while Okaro White scored 18 points (12 coming in the second half) as the Seminoles used their big, physical front line to over power the Hatters. FSU had a 33-14 lead with six minutes left, but gave up a 16-0 run over the course of four minutes to allow Stetson back in the game.

Other notable scores:

- Georgia 72, South Dakota State 61
- Penn State 77, LIU 68
- Old Dominion 53, Howard 43
- Tennessee 85, Louisiana-Monroe 62
- Clemson 73, The Citadel 50
- Notre Dame 74, Sam Houston State 41
- Texas Tech 69, North Texas 64
- Oregon State 82, Hofstra 72

Top performers:

Jared Cunningham and Devon Collier, Oregon State: Cunningham and Collier both set career-highs in an 82-72 win over Hofstra. Cunningham had 35 points and five boards, going 11-16 from the floor, while Collier added 25 points on 9-12 shooting and added three steals and two blocks.

Cesar Guerrero, Oklahoma State: We told you about his heroics earlier, but Guerrero, just a freshman, finished this game with 29 points, five boards and five assists.

Casper Ware, Long Beach State: We already told you, but it deserves another mention -- Ware had 28 points, six assists and just one turnover as LBSU knocked off No. 9 Pitt.

Trae Golden, Tennessee: Trae Golden had 17 points and 11 assists as the Volunteers pulled away from Louisiana-Monroe late in an 85-62 win. In two games this season, Golden is averaging 23.0 ppg and 10.0 apg with just five total turnovers.

Tim Frazier, Penn State: The lone holdover from last season's tournament team, Frazier had 26 points, 10 assists and five boards as the Nittany Lions beat Long Island 77-68.

Doug McDermott, Creighton: McDermott had 27 points and seven boards as the Bluejays went into Birmingham and knocked off UAB.

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