College Basketball Roundup: Holy Cross, Michigan Win in First Four

By Services, From Wire | St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO), March 17, 2016 | Go to article overview

College Basketball Roundup: Holy Cross, Michigan Win in First Four


Services, From Wire, St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)


Holy Cross has a losing record and a long-awaited win in the NCAA Tournament.

Robert Champion scored 19 points, including a key 3-pointer in the final minute, to help the Crusaders beat Southern University 59- 55 Wednesday night in Dayton, Ohio, for their first tournament victory in 63 years.

"I think it's fantastic," coach Bill Carmody said. "It's everything we're trying to do at Holy Cross. We're trying to jump- start the program because we realize what an athletic program can do for a school. It's a great first step."

Holy Cross (15-19) was an unlikely NCAA participant, earning its automatic bid by winning four consecutive road games to take the Patriot League Tournament title.

Now, after pulling out a sluggish game in the First Four, the 16th-seeded Crusaders are off to play No. 1 seed Oregon in the West Regional on Friday in Spokane, Wash.

And they certainly plan to savor the experience.

"We're just enjoying this right now," Champion said. "We're going to hop on a plane and go to Spokane. We're just enjoying it and going for the ride."

Champion, a junior guard, also made two key free throws with 14 seconds left to seal the victory in a sloppy game that didn't get tight until well into the second half. He connected on as many 3s as the entire Southern team, which was 3 for 20 from beyond the arc.

The Crusaders had lost nine consecutive NCAA Tournament games since defeating Navy and Wake Forest in 1953 six years after Holy Cross won the national championship.

Adrian Rodgers led Southern (22-13) with 14 points, and Shawn Prudhomme scored 10. Southern won the Southwestern Athletic Conference Tournament to earn its NCAA bid.

Michigan edges Tulsa * Zak Irvin hit a go-ahead 3-pointer and a pair of free throws in the closing minute as Michigan pulled out another one at the end on Wednesday night, beating Tulsa 67-62 in the First Four in Dayton. …

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