NCAA Tournament: Virginia Tech dominates early, dispatches Saint Louis

SAN JOSE — A ferocious defense collided with an anemic offense and the result was hard to watch.

Virginia Tech handled Saint Louis 66-52 in the NCAA Tournament on Friday night at the SAP Center, after holding the Billikens to 18 first-half points.

The Hokies (25-8), making a third straight NCAA appearance for the first time in program history, tied a school record for victories in the season. They get the chance to break that mark Sunday when they face 12th-seeded Liberty, an 80-76 upset winner over Mississippi State.

Virginia Tech, whose No. 4 seed in the East Region is their highest ever, dominated from the start.

They had leads of 19-6, 26-8 and 36-15 on the way to a 40-18 margin at the break. That was one point fewer than Tech scored off Saint Louis turnovers in the half.

Saint Louis (22-13) twice got within 10 points in the second half but couldn’t overcome its hideous first 20 minutes. The Hokies were hardly artistic in the second half, shooting just 4 for 19, without a field goal in the final 6:55.

Nickel Alexander-Walker led the Hokies with 20 points and Kenny Blackshear had 15.

Tramaine Isabelle Jr., named Most Outstanding Player in the Billikens’ four-game run to the Atlantic-10 tournament crown, scored 11 points on 4-for-12 shooting and had five turnovers.

Tech ranks 11th nationally in scoring defense and that was problematic for the Billikens, who were 304th nationally in scoring offense.

Saint Louis managed only seven shot attempts in the first 10 minutes and at one point had twice as many turnovers (10) as field goals (5). The Billikens finished the first half shooting 33 percent, including 1 for 9 on threes, with 12 turnovers.

…read more

Source:: The Mercury News – Sports

      

Sharks lose fifth straight game in Anaheim

ANAHEIM, Calif. — Jakob Silfverberg scored just 38 seconds into overtime to extend the Sharks losing streak to five games.

Logan Couture returned from flu-like symptoms on Friday, but it wasn’t enough to get the Sharks back in the win column as they completed a two-game road trip to Southern California with a winless record, dropping a 4-3 decision to the Anaheim Ducks.

By earning a single point, the Sharks moved to within four points of the Calgary Flames for first place in the Western Conference.

The Ducks opened the scoring at 7:58 of the first, capitalizing on a Brent Burns turnover in the neutral zone. Ryan Getzlaf stripped the puck from Burns as he attempted to dance through the Ducks defense, leading to an odd-man rush and a goal from Rickard Rakell, who ripped a 30-foot shot into the top-left corner.

The Sharks tied it up at 2:29 of the second when Kevin Labanc scored his 14th of the season by picking the top-right corner from the lower-left circle. Marc-Edouard Vlasic and Marcus Sorensen picked up assists on the play.

The interstate rivals traded power play goals in the third. First, Adam Henrique snuck a one timer from Troy Terry through Aaron Dell’s five hole at 2:41. The Sharks tied it at 6:29, scoring just their third power play goal in 24 tries over a 10-game span. Timo Meier scored the equalizer, tapping in a Joe Thornton shot that squeaked through John Gibson’s pads.

With the secondary assists, Burns earned his 77th point of the season, setting a single-season franchise record for points by a defenseman.

The Ducks took a 3-2 lead at 15:05 of the third when Rackell scored his second of the game by firing in a shot from above the left circle on a Sharks power play. But Justin Braun made his 600th …read more

Source:: The Mercury News – Sports

      

No. 11 Ohio St. upsets Wigginton, No. 6 Iowa State

TULSA, Okla. — Ohio State went from barely making the NCAA Tournament to a spot in the second round with a 62-59 upset of sixth-seeded Iowa State in the Midwest Region on Friday night.

Kaleb Wesson had 21 points and 12 rebounds to lead the 11th-seeded Buckeyes (20-14).

Keyshawn Woods added 19 points for Ohio State, which will play No. 3 seed Houston on Sunday for a spot in the round of 16. Musa Jallow added 11 points for Ohio State.

Iowa State (23-12) led just once in the second half but had a chance to send the game into overtime when Nick Weiler-Babb had an open attempt at a game-tying 3. His shot missed and ended the season for the Cyclones, who won the Big 12 Tournament to earn a spot in the NCAAs.

Marial Shayok scored 23 points and Lindell Wigginton added 14 for Iowa State.

Ohio State led 26-24 at halftime and started to gain momentum in the early minutes of the second half. Woods threw up a lob to Jallow for a dunk that put the Buckeyes up 38-32 with 14 minutes to play.

Iowa State caught a much-needed break when Wigginton was fouled on a 3-pointer. He made the free throw to cut Ohio State’s lead to 44-42. Shayok’s mid-range jumper finally put Iowa State up 54-53, but Ohio State answered quickly. Woods’ corner three put the Buckeyes up 58-54.

Wesson missed a free throw with Ohio State up three and 10 seconds remaining to set up the final sequence.

BIG PICTURE

Ohio State: The Buckeyes slowed the game down and turned it into a Big Ten-style bruise …read more

Source:: Sportsnet.ca

      

Charlottesville police arrest suspect in racist school threat

By Debbie Truong and Joe Heim | The Washington Post

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. — A 17-year-old was arrested and charged Friday in connection with a racist online threat that prompted Charlottesville city schools to close Thursday and Friday, police said.

Police Chief RaShall Brackney said the suspect, who is being charged as a juvenile, was arrested in adjacent Albemarle County and is believed to have acted alone. Brackney declined to provide additional information about the teen other than to say he is not a student in the Charlottesville school system.

The anonymous threat that was posted online Wednesday warned of an “ethnic cleansing” at Charlottesville High School the following day. It used racist language to describe black and Latino students and told white students to stay home.

The suspect has been charged with threats to commit serious bodily harm on school property, a felony, and harassment by computer, a misdemeanor, Brackney said at a news conference attended by law enforcement and city leaders, including Mayor Nikuyah Walker.

Brackney said Charlottesville detectives worked closely with Albemarle County law enforcement officers, the Virginia State Police and the FBI to identify and apprehend the suspect.

The announcement of the arrest helped quell some of the anxiety that had engulfed Charlottesville since news of the threat was made public Wednesday.

Brackney addressed the city’s apprehension with a firm statement of resolve. “Any threats made against our community and its residents will be thoroughly and vigorously investigated,” she said. “We want the community and the world to know that hate is not welcomed in Charlottesville. Violence is not welcomed in Charlottesville. Intolerance is not welcomed in Charlottesville.”

Then, in an apparent reference to President Donald Trump’s remark that “very fine people on both sides” took part in the deadly white supremacy rally that rocked the city in August 2017, Brackney said, “In Charlottesville and …read more

Source:: The Mercury News – Nation, World

      

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