Friday, February 10, 2012

Friday's Shootaround: Murray State and St. Mary's lose

Gonzaga 73, No. 13 St. Mary's 59: See here.

Tennessee State 72, No. 7 Murray State 68: See here.

No. 22 Wisconsin 68, Minnesota 61 OT: In one of the stranger games you are going to see this season, Minnesota whiffed on a golden opportunity to land a marquee win heading into the season's crucial stretch. The Golden Gophers were down 13 point midway through the second half, but managed to hold Wisconsin scoreless over a seven and a half minute stretch to close out regulation. The problem? Minnesota was only able to muster 10 points during that stretch, eventually heading to overtime after Tubby Smith's club missed two shots in the game's final seconds that would have sent Wisconsin back to Madison with their fifth loss of Big Ten play.

In the extra frame, Minnesota went cold, allowing Wisconsin to reel off six straight point in the first 3:35 of overtime to take a commanding lead. The Badgers hit 11 of their 12 free throws in the final minute to seal the win. Jordan Taylor led the way for Wisky going for 27 points on 8-14 shooting from the floor. If Wisconsin wants a real shot to make some noise late in the season, they are going to need more out of the rest of the Badgers. Everyone not named Jordan Taylor went just 11-39 from the floor.

Minnesota's next five games: Ohio State, at Northwestern, Michigan State, Indiana, at Wisconsin. They'll have their chances to prove they belong in the dance.


No. 23 Indiana 84, Illinois 71: Its looks like Indiana may have finally righted the ship. After losing five of seven, four of which were away from Assembly Hall, the Hoosiers backed up a 17 point win in Mackey Arena with a solid win over an up-and-down Illinois team. Cody Zeller finished with 22 points and five boards -- outplaying Meyers Leonard, who fouled out with 17 points -- as the Hoosiers head into the stretch of the Big Ten schedule with a 7-6 record in the league and their three toughest opponents all visiting Bloomington.

No. 18 Mississippi State 70, Ole Miss 60: Despite losing their leading scorer midway through the season, the Rebels have found themselves sitting smack in the middle of the SEC and with a real shot at earning an at-large bid to the Big Dance. Unfortunately, this season looks like it is going to go down as one of missed opportunities. They lost in double overtime to both Alabama and Auburn. They blew a 16 point lead and lost to Florida at home. Dee Bost had 15 points and 13 assists while Arnett Moultrie added 18 points in the win for the Bulldogs, who improved to 6-3 in league play.


Pac-12:

- Oregon 82, Washington 57: There are times where Washington can look so good and there are times where the Huskies look downright atrocious. Tonight was the latter. The Ducks were up 49-26 at the half as they ran away with this one. I don't care if the game was played on the road, you cannot lose by 25 points in league play to a thoroughly mediocre team and be considered a threat to do anything. Unless, of course, you are Washington, who always seems to put themselves in this situation before making a miraculous, late-season run.

- Arizona 71, Colorado 57: All of a sudden, the Wildcats look like they may actually be the best team in the Pac-12. Granted, the Buffs have been atrocious on the road this season, but the Wildcats, playing without the injured Kevin Parrom, have now won three in a row, picking off both Cal and Stanford on the road last week.

- Cal 75, USC 49: With this win and Washington's loss, the Bears pull back into a first-place tie in the league with Washington at 9-3. Oregon, Colorado and Arizona are all sitting a game back at 8-4.

- UCLA 72, Stanford 61


Summit League:

- South Dakota 72, South Dakota State 68: The Jackrabbits hit 10 second half threes, including eight in the final 11 minutes, to cut a 19 point deficit all the way down to two points with 23 seconds left. But Nate Wolters, who finished with 27 points and six assists, missed a potential game-tying three and SDSU missed two front-ends late in the game. SDSU falls two games behind league leader Oral Roberts, a deficit that is going to be tough to make up in the season's final four games.

- Oral Roberts 76, IUPUI 74 OT: ORU barely survived in this one. Playing in the Mabee Center, the Golden Eagles fouled Alex Young, who finished with 34 points, when he hit a three. He hit the free throws, forcing OT. In the extra session, IUPUI hit a free throw to tie the game at 74, but Roderick Pearson bailed ORU out with a running one-hander to win the game at the buzzer.


NC State 61, Georgia Tech 52: The Wolfpack overcame an early deficit on the strength of 15 points from CJ Williams as they avenged an loss to the Yellow Jackets earlier this season. The win moves NC State to 7-3 in the ACC and keeps them in contention for an at-large bid.

Valparaiso 59, Cleveland State 41: Valpo's win gave them a sweep of the Vikings, my pick to win the Horizon this season, and in the process took over sole possession of first place in the league, although they are only a half-game up on CSU and tied in the loss column. Of note: Kevin Van Wijk injured his knee in the game and didn't return.


Other notable scores:

- LMU 76, Portland 62
- Nevada 88, Hawaii 79
- Davidson 77, The Citadel 66
- Stony Brook 80, UMBC 68
- Weber State 67, Northern Arizona 49
- Northwestern 83, Iowa 64
- Miami 65, Virginia Tech 49
- Long Beach State 74, Pacific 66

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