Louisville wins title in first, only appearance in AAC Tournament

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Montrezl Harrell had 22 points, 11 rebounds and three blocks, and fifth-ranked Louisville beat No. 21 Connecticut 71-61 Saturday for the inaugural American Athletic Conference Tournament title in the Cardinals’ lone season in the league.

Louisville forward Stephan Van Treese (left) tries to pass the ball away as Connecticut guard Shabazz Napier closes in. The Cardinals, who will move to the ACC next year, won the inaugural AAC Tournament title Saturday.  MARK HUMPHREY/ASSOCIATED PRESS
MARK HUMPHREY/ASSOCIATED PRESS
Louisville forward Stephan Van Treese (left) tries to pass the ball away as Connecticut guard Shabazz Napier closes in. The Cardinals, who will move to the ACC next year, won the inaugural AAC Tournament title Saturday.

The defending national champions clinched their 40th NCAA Tournament berth.

The Cardinals (29-5) have won three consecutive league tournament titles after taking the last two in the Big East, and they added their 19th overall to go with their share of the regular-season title with Cincinnati. They will play next season in the Atlantic Coast Conference.

Russ Smith, named the tournament’s most outstanding player, had 19 points and five steals for Louisville, and Chris Jones added 11 points.

UConn (26-8) came in looking for an eighth tournament title to go with seven from the Big East.

UCLA 75, NO. 4 ARIZONA 71

In Las Vegas, Kyle Anderson had 21 points and 15 rebounds, Jordan Adams hit a huge 3-pointer in the final minute, and UCLA outlasted Arizona in the Pac-12 title game.

David Wear and Norman Powell combined to hit four free throws down the stretch, giving UCLA (26-8) the Pac-12 title in its first year under coach Steve Alford.

Nick Johnson had 22 points and Kaleb Tarczewski added 12 for Arizona (30-4), which might have lost out on a No. 1 seed in the NCAATournament with the loss.

NO. 20 NEW MEXICO 64,
NO. 8 SAN DIEGO STATE 58

In Las Vegas, Cameron Bairstow scored 17 points to lead New Mexico to a victory over San Diego State in the Mountain West Conference title game, giving the Lobos the automatic berth into the NCAA Tournament.

The No. 2 seed in the Mountain West tournament is now 6-0 all-time when playing the No. 1 seed.

NO. 8 MICHIGAN 72, NO. 24 OHIO STATE 69

In Indianapolis, Michigan blew a 12-point second-half lead, then finished the game on a 7-1 run to beat archrival Ohio State in the Big Ten Tournament semifinals.

The league’s regular-season champs will face No. 12 Wisconsin or No. 22 Michigan State in Sunday’s championship game.

Nik Stauskas had 18 points and Caris LeVert had 17 to lead the Wolverines (25-7), winners of seven in a row.

Ohio State (25-9) was led by LaQuinton Ross with 19 points and Shannon Scott with 18.

NO. 22 MICHIGAN STATE 83,
NO. 12 WISCONSIN 75

Adreian Payne scored 18 points, Branden Dawson had 14 and Michigan State beat Wisconsin to reach the Big Ten final.

The third-seeded Spartans (25-8) won consecutive games for the first time since winning 11 in a row during a stretch over December and January.

Frank Kaminsky had 28 points and Sam Decker added 11 points and seven rebounds for the second-seeded Badgers (26-7).

PROVIDENCE 65, NO. 14 CREIGHTON 56

In New York, Bryce Cotton scored 23 points and Providence won its first Big East tournament title since 1994 with a great defensive effort against Doug McDermott and Creighton.

The fourth-seeded Friars (23-11) used a 2-3 zone to hold the second-seeded Bluejays (26-7) 24 points below their season average.

McDermott, who was named the tournament’s MVP despite the loss, for 27 points. He was 10 for 19 from the field.

CONFERENCE USA TOURNAMENT

TULSA 69, LOUISIANA TECH 60

In El Paso, Texas, James Woodard scored 27 points to lead Tulsa to a spot in the NCAA Tournament with a victory against Louisiana Tech in the final.

The victory put the Hurricane in the NCAA Tournament for the first time since the 2003 season. Tulsa (21-12), which is led by coach Danny Manning, will carry an 11-game win streak into the tournament.

Top-seeded Louisiana Tech (27-8) came up short, extending an NCAA tournament drought dating to 1991.

MAC TOURNAMENT

WESTERN MICHIGAN 98, TOLEDO 77

In Cleveland, David Brown scored 32 points, Tucker Haymond added 21 and Western Michigan earned its first trip to the NCAA Tournament in 10 years by beating Toledo in the final.

The top-seeded Broncos (23-9) won their first title since 2004.

AMERICA EAST TOURNAMENT

ALBANY 69, STONY BROOK 60

In Stony Brook, N.Y., DJ Evans scored 16 points as Albany defeated Stony Brook in the final, giving the school their second consecutive NCAA Tournament berth.

MEAC TOURNAMENT

NORTH CAROLINA CENTRAL 71,
MORGAN STATE 62

In Norfolk, Va., Jeremy Ingram scored 29 points and North Carolina Central used an 8-1 run to get some separation and held on to beat Morgan State and earn an NCAA Tournament bid.

SWAC TOURNAMENT

TEXAS SOUTHERN 78, PRAIRIE VIEW 73

In Houston, Aaric Murray had 27 points and 10 rebounds to lead Texas Southern to a win over Prairie View in the Southwestern Athletic Conference championship game and a berth in the NCAA Tournament.

BIG SKY TOURNAMENT

WEBER STATE 88, NORTH DAKOTA 67

In Ogden, Utah, Kyle Tresnak scored 27 points and Weber State beat North Dakota to win the league title and claim an NCAA berth.


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