May 26, 2019

College Basketball Tournaments: Florida Tops L.S.U. in Last Second

College Basketball Tournaments: Florida Tops L.S.U. in Last Second

Andrew Nembhard hit a 3-pointer with a second left, and Florida rallied from a 13-point deficit in the second half to upset ninth-ranked and top-seeded Louisiana State, 76-73, on Friday in the Southeastern Conference tournament quarterfinals in Nashville.

Eighth-seeded Florida (19-14) will face No. 22 Auburn on Saturday on the strength of a thrilling comeback that firmed up the Gators’ chances for an at-large N.C.A.A. tournament berth.

L.S.U. (26-6), the SEC regular-season champion, had one last chance as Will Reese threw the ball deep to Naz Reid, who could not catch it while being defended by a pair of Gators. That avoided the third overtime this season between these teams.

L.S.U. had won five straight without Coach Will Wade, who remains suspended despite asking on Thursday to rejoin the Tigers.

The university squashed that idea with a statement that Wade would remain suspended until he spoke to L.S.U. officials about the reports of an F.B.I. wiretap that led to his suspension on March 8.

L.S.U. led by as much as 42-29 with 16 minutes 52 seconds left. Florida clawed back into the game by hitting eight straight shots and 10 of 11.

Reid finished with 26 points and 14 rebounds for the Tigers.

Auburn (24-9), the fifth seed, pulled away in the last four minutes for a 73-64 victory over fourth-seeded South Carolina (16-16). Jared Harper scored 27 points in the Tigers’ sixth win in a row.

In night action, Tyler Herro scored 20 points to lead No. 4 Kentucky (27-5) to a 73-55 victory against Alabama (18-15), whose N.C.A.A. tournament hopes took a blow.

BIG TEN Cassius Winston had 18 points, helping No. 6 Michigan State (26-6) gave the Hall of Fame coach Tom Izzo his 600th career win, 77-70, over Ohio State (19-14) in the quarterfinals in Chicago. The Spartans will face No. 19 Wisconsin (23-9), which got a key 3-pointer from D’Mitrik Trice with 58 seconds left in a 66-62 win that ended the underdog run of short-handed Nebraska (18-16).

BIG 12 Marial Shayok, who had 21 points, hit back-to-back 3-pointers in front of his own bench to give Iowa State (22-11) the lead in the final minute of a 63-59 victory against No. 15 Kansas State (25-8), the tournament’s top seed, in the semifinals in Kansas City, Mo.

ATLANTIC 10 Jeff Dowtin scored 22 points to help lead eighth-seeded Rhode Island (18-14) to a 75-70 upset of top-seeded Virginia Commonwealth (25-7) in the quarterfinals at Barclays Center. It is the third straight year that Rhode Island has ousted V.C.U. The Rams will face St. Bonaventure (17-15), a 68-57 winner over George Mason (18-15) behind 20 points each from Dominick Welch and Kyle Lofton. … Jon Axel Gudmundsson had 18 points and 11 rebounds to help second-seeded Davidson (24-8) hold off 10th-seeded St. Joseph’s (13-19) by 70-60.

AMERICAN Corey Davis Jr. scored 22 points and No. 11 Houston (30-2) routed Connecticut, 84-45, in the quarterfinals in Memphis. Jalen Adams led the Huskies (16-17) with 15 points and 10 rebounds. The Cougars will face Memphis (21-12), which got a career-high 21 points from Isaiah Maurice in a 79-55 win over Central Florida (23-8).

MID-AMERICAN C. J. Massinburg scored 21 points, including on a spinning layup and four free throws in the final 32 seconds, as No. 18 Buffalo (30-3) beat Central Michigan (23-11) by 85-81 in the semifinals in Cleveland.

PLEA IN BRIBERY CASE The former Auburn assistant Chuck Person is scheduled to plead guilty on Tuesday to a conspiracy charge in a scandal that involved bribes paid to entice young athletes to go to top programs.

The change-of-plea hearing was revealed in a filing late Friday by prosecutors in Federal District Court in Manhattan. Person, a former N.B.A. player, will be the fourth and final college assistant to make a plea in the case. His deal is expected to be roughly the same as that offered to the others, with a recommended sentencing guideline of two to two and a half years in prison.

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