UAB sends No. 1 Kentucky home

Posted: Monday, March 22, 2004

COLUMBUS, Ohio The NCAA tournament's top seed got sent back to its ol' Kentucky home.

Mo Finley made a 17-foot jumper with 12.2 seconds left and ninth-seeded Alabama-Birmingham stunned the Wildcats 76-75 Sunday in the second round of the St. Louis Regional.

Kentucky's Gerald Fitch missed a 3-pointer with 2.2 seconds left, and Chuck Hayes' tip rolled off the rim just before the horn.

The Blazers (22-9) advanced to the round of 16 for the first time since 1982 with their second big upset of Kentucky in the NCAA tournament. UAB's win came almost exactly 23 years to the day that the Blazers beat Kentucky in the second round in 1981.

For the second straight year, Kentucky (27-5) came up short in its quest for an eighth NCAA title as the tourney's favorite. The Wildcats were the second No. 1 seed to be dispatched this weekend, following Stanford, which got beat by Alabama on Saturday.

Mo Finley scored 17 points, and Donell Taylor and Gabe Kennedy had 13 apiece for the Blazers, who advanced to play fourth-seeded Kansas on Friday at Edward Jones Dome.

Gerald Fitch led Kentucky with 17 points.

Kansas 78, Pacific 63

KANSAS CITY, Mo. Wayne Simien had 18 points and 12 rebounds and Kansas overcame a slow start to beat Pacific.

Kansas (23-8), which has made two straight Final Fours, is in the round of 16 for the fourth consecutive year.

Guillaume Yango had 22 points for Pacific (25-8), which had won 16 straight games.

Georgia Tech 57, Boston College 54

MILWAUKEE Jarrett Jack scored four points in the final minute, including a key steal and dunk with less than six seconds left to lift Georgia Tech to a 57-54 win over Boston College.

The third-seeded Yellow Jackets advanced to the semifinals of the St. Louis Regional to face 10th-seeded Nevada on Friday at Edward Jones Dome.

Jack finished with eight points, six rebounds and six assists. B.J. Elder led the Yellow Jackets (25-9) with 18 points.

Jared Dudley had 13 points for Boston College (24-10).

East Rutherford Regional

Oklahoma St. 70, Memphis 53

KANSAS CITY, Mo. Joey Graham scored 21 points all but one of those coming in the first half for Oklahoma State.

The second-seeded Cowboys (29-3) will meet third-seeded Pittsburgh on Thursday at Continental Airlines Arena.

Oklahoma State led 41-19 after a first half in which it shot 68 percent (17-for-23) and outrebounded the Tigers (22-8) 17-6. Antonio Burks and led Memphis with 21 points.

Pittsburgh 59, Wisconsin 55

MILWAUKEE Carl Krauser scored 16 points, and Julius Page added 12 to lead Pittsburgh (31-4).

Pittsburgh shot 36 percent to the Badgers' 35 percent, and it was anybody's game until the closing seconds when the Panthers made all the crucial plays.

Devin Harris scored 21 points for the Badgers (25-7), but none after his 3-pointer gave Wisconsin a 40-37 lead.

Atlanta Regional

Xavier 89, Mississippi St. 74

ORLANDO, Fla. Lionel Chalmers scored a career-high 31 points, and Dedrick Finn added 22, helping seventh-seeded Xavier upset second-seeded Mississippi State.

Xavier (25-10), which has won 15 of 16 games after a 10-9 start, advanced beyond the second round for the first time since 1990. The Musketeers will face third-seeded Texas on Friday at the Georgia Dome.

Mississippi State (26-4) shot 36 percent and lost control of the game after building a 23-13 lead. Xavier finished the half with a 21-10 run, with Chalmers scoring 12 points in that stretch.

Shane Power led Mississippi State with 16 points.

Illinois 92, Cincinnati 68

COLUMBUS, Ohio Deron Williams hit his first seven attempts, setting the tone for a can't-miss attack, and fifth-seeded Illinois rolled past Cincinnati.

Williams matched his career high with 31 points, going 10-of-13 from the field, and Illinois (26-6) shot a season-high 63.6 percent. The Big Ten regular-season champion will play top-seeded Duke on Friday at the Georgia Dome.

Dee Brown, nicknamed the ''One-man Fastbreak,'' added 14 points, eight assists and two sleight-of-hand plays that helped Illinois take control early. Field Williams led fourth-seeded Cincinnati (26-7) with 16 points.

Phoenix Regional

Vanderbilt 75, N. Carolina St. 73

ORLANDO, Fla. Matt Freije scored 31 points, and Corey Smith's three-point play with 21.2 seconds remaining lifted sixth-seeded Vanderbilt past North Carolina State.

Vanderbilt (23-9) trailed by 11 with 4:20 left, but Freije scored 11 points from there to lead the comeback.

The Commodores will play second-seeded Connecticut on Thursday at America West Arena.

Ilian Evtimov had a career-high 28 points for third-seeded North Carolina State (21-10).

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