Friday, March 21, 2008

First Round Games Results for Friday, March 21, 2008

By Robert H. Kelly
Copyright 2008 TexSport Publications

Day two games in the first round of the NCAA Men's Division 1 Basketball Tournament are completed. I went 10-6 (.625) on my predictions today. Overall through the first round, I am 24-8 (.750).

Below is the scores and a brief recap of each game I predicted correctly. The six games I incorrectly predicted are listed at the bottom.

Games that I correctly predicted the outcome:

Tennessee 72 American 57: American University made a good go at it, tying the game at 40 with 11:15 remaining and trailing by only one with 6:00 left. It didn't have enough at the end, though, losing to Tennessee by a final score of 72-57. Carr scored a game-high 26 for the Eagles, but he didn't have enough help from the rest of the team.

Butler 91 South Alabama 61 South Alabama had a 23-22 lead 14 minutes deep into the first half, but that was when Campbell turned it on for Butler. From that point until halftime, Campbell scored 14 points, at one point making four 3-point attempts in a row. The Bulldogs never looked back from that moment, now able to look ahead to Tennessee in the second round. Despite putting in their bench players in the final minutes of the blowout, the Bulldogs still finished with 49 percent shooting from the field and a 15-for-30 line from 3-point range. They were led by Campbell's 26 points on 9-of-11 shooting, eight of those from outside of the arc.

Texas 74 Austin Peay 54: The Texas Longhorns exploded from the start of the game and the Governors never really had a chance as a result. The Longhorns will be met with a tough test in the second round, they will take on the Miami Hurricanes. Although the Hurricanes had a great game earlier, the Longhorns look untouchable. AJ Abrams is going to be the guy to look out for in the tournament. He is our player of the game and finishes with 26 points and one rebound. I can't wait for the second round to see how Abrams matches with McClinton

Georgetown 66 Maryland-Baltimore County 47: Georgetown came out and put up big numbers. This was just bascially a practice game for them and no one expected UMBC to be more than a quick laugh. The Hoyas, though, face the longest current win streak in the nation when they play Davidson and its star, Curry, who has the second highest scoring average in the nation. They will put the likes of Rivers, Crawford, and Sapp on him and hope that he has an off night. The Hoyas should be a tougher challenge than Davidson's first round matchup, mostly because of Hibbert and Wallace.

North Carolina 113 Mount St. Mary’s 74: This one was over before it started and the Heels left no doubt in their performance. Hansbrough dominated from the start and finished with 21 and 6 in only 26 minutes. A dominating performance all around, with four of five starters in double figures. Mount St. Mary's enjoyed the opportunity just to be at the dance and will have to wait till next year for a chance at a second song. Carolina freshman getting an extended stay on the floor and making the most of it. Wooten and Tanner pocket three balls and the lead remains to hover around the 40 point mark. Carolina just surpassed it's season high of 110 and the rich keep getting richer as Surry Wood breaks free for a hangaround slam. And it finally comes to a close. 113-72 Carolina moving on.

Arkansas 86 Indiana 72: Excellent coaching job by the Razorbacks John Pelfrey, particular in his handling of offense-defense substitutions in the second half. Every dead ball situation, Pelfrey had Steven Hill coming in to play defense, or leaving the court briefly in favor of offense, and it helped wear down D.J. White late in the game. Also, outstanding night on the offensive end for Sonny Weems, the game's high scorer with 31 points.

Louisville 79 Bosie State 61: The Cardinals advance to take on the Oklahoma Sooners on Sunday in the round of 32. They'll have to take better care of the basketball. They turned it over 16 times to a much weaker opponent. That is unacceptable. What they'd like to continue is the good 3-point shooting. They were 12-24 from deep and shot 55% from the field. Clark, Smith and Palacios each reached double digits in scoring. The Broncos were led by Nelson who had 17 points. Tiedeman failed to score in the second half after tallying 12 in the first. The Broncos are now 0-5 in the tournament all-time. That's all from Birmingham for now.

Oklahoma 72 St. Joseph’s 64: St. Joe's put on a great run in the second half, but it was too little too late as they fall to the Sooners. David Godbold was huge for Oklahoma, scoring 25 and hitting big baskets when it seemed to matter down the stretch. Oklahoma moves on to face the winner of the Louisville-Boise St. Match-up.

Villanova 75 Clemson 69: This Villanova team can be very dangerous down the road. I always say the teams with the better guard play will have a really good chance of winning games in this tournament and the Wildcats have a pair of excellent guards. The game against Siena should be very fun to watch this upcoming weekend.

Memphis 87 UT-Arlington 63: The Tigers have advanced to the 2nd round and will now face Mississippi State on Sunday in Little Rock. The Tigers shot 62 percent from the free- throw line tonight. Better than usual but they will need to do better than that if games get close

The six games I missed are below.

Davidson 82 Gonzaga 76: What a game. Stephen Curry is even better than his father Dell, who was one of the great pure shooters in the game. It is not often that the offspring is better, but this guy has already out-done his father in many people's eyes.

Miami (Fla) 78 St. Mary’s 64: The Miami Hurricanes looked like they were going to be upset by the St. Mary's Gaels today. However, this team really turned the corner in the second half. They were led by Jack McClinton. He had a point total that the NBA's elite would be very happy with. It's no surprise who the player of the game is. Jack McClinton finishes the game with 38 points, three assists and two rebounds. He only scored six points in the first half, so his 32-point second half effort went a long way. Actually, his second half effort matched the entire St. Mary's team.

Siena 83 Vanderbilt 75: The #13 Siena Saints made many media members look as smart as they always claim to be, upsetting the #4 Vanderbilt Commodores with ease. The Saints put the clamps down in the final minutes of the game and cruised to a 21-point victory. Kenny Hasbrouck (30 points, four rebounds, four assists) was incredible all night before coming off the floor with what looked like a minor foot injury. The Vanderbilt Commodores fell behind to start the game and never were able to catch the sharp-shooting Saints. Vanderbilt made a short 9-2 run late in the second half to climb to within nine, but the Saints answered with a 12-0 run of their own to finish things off. The Siena Saints will now face the winner of the #6 Clemson and #12 Villanova game.

Mississippi State 76 Oregon 69: Mississippi State overcame a 13 point deficit in the first half to run away from Oregon with a 76-69 win. Charles Rhodes had a career-high 34 points as he controlled the low post all game long. Jarvis Varnado had 4 blocks on the game and made Oregon think twice about driving the lane all game long. Oregon lived and died from their 3-point shot as they went ice cold in the second half. The Ducks make only 2-20 3-point shots as they kept on going to the well too often and not able to adjust. They gave their all in the first half, but just could not find a rhythm for the last stanza in their season.

San Diego 70 UCONN 69: Connecticut just could not get any offensive rhythm going today. Their defensive star, Hasheem Thabeet was a non-factor as numerous times San Diego was able to get around on the baseline for easy buckets. This marks the first time under coach Jim Calhoun that UConn will not be advancing to the 2nd round.

WKU 101 Drake 99: Drake got off to a very cold start through all of the first half and 5 minutes of the 2nd. Once they got going though and their defense tightened up they were able to tie the game up and send it to overtime. Despite very bad shot selection at times and some bad decisions on defense, the Bulldogs hung around. The three-ball put Western Kentucky in the lead, caused their collapse, and eventually won them the game. Western Kentucky shot 51% from the three-point line and it was the shot by Ty Rogers that sends them into the second round. Tyrone Brazelton led four players in double digits with 33 points. It was the Hilltopper bench that essentially won the game for them as they outscored Drake's bench 26-3.

See you tomorrow for more results.

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