Marshall wins its first March Madness game
Thundering Herd take down Wichita State, will face West Virginia in Mountain State tussle
THE ASSOCIATED PRESS, REUTERS
Saturday, March 17, 2018 Print Edition, Page S2
SAN DIEGO -- The Marshall Thundering Herd celebrated like never before.
For the first time in six tries during 62 years, the Thundering Herd won an NCAA Tournament game.
Jon Elmore scored 27 points and Jarrod West hit a huge threepointer with three minutes left to help No. 13 seed Marshall topple fourth-seeded Wichita State 81-75 in the East Region.
When the buzzer sounded, West raised his arms in the air and joyously ran practically the length of the court before joining his teammates in celebration.
"Long time!" coach Dan D'Antoni said moments later.
Was it ever.
The Thundering Herd (25-10) made its first NCAA tourney appearance in 1956 and made its most recent one in 1987, losing all five along the way. The 1987 loss was later vacated due to infractions. Its only postseason victories were in the NIT in 1967, when D'Antoni was on the team.
"So we've got a little bit to do," said D'Antoni, the older brother of Houston Rockets coach Mike D'Antoni. "I like these guys. I like the chance riding with them, fun to be on a trip with and they're fun to watch to play and it's real fun when we win. So we're going to try to do that one more time.
"I told them the beginning goal is to win the NCAA Tournament. Wherever we get in the car driving down the road to that championship, when it stops we'll all get off and we'll be happy because we like who is in the car.
We like the journey we're on.
We're looking forward to the next leg, and I have confidence in these guys that they'll give you a real good ball game and got a great chance to win."
Marshall advances to face West Virginia, which beat Murray State 85-68. Marshall joined Buffalo as 13th seeds to win this week. On Thursday night, Buffalo beat No. 4 seed Arizona.
Wichita State (25-8) got 27 points from Conner Frankamp and seemed to be in control midway through the second half, but the Thundering Herd refused to fade despite its lack of NCAA tourney experience.
WEST VIRGINIA 85, MURRAY STATE 68
Mountaineers (26-10) guard Jevon Carter had 21 points and eight assists and Teddy Allen had 16 points to defeat the Racers in East Region action in San Diego.
Carter had six of the Mountaineers' nine steals. His steal and assist on a Logan Routt fast-break dunk capped a 7-0 run for a 58-45 lead with 11:58 remaining, and Murray State never pulled closer than 11 points.
Terrell Miller Jr. had a seasonhigh 27 points with five threepointers and added 17 rebounds for the Racers (26-7), who got only one field goal from leading scorer Jonathan Stark.
PURDUE 74, CAL STATE FULLERTON 48
Senior forward Vincent Edwards recorded 15 points and grabbed seven rebounds to help the Boilermakers roll into the second round in Detroit.
Sophomore guard Carsen Edwards added 15 points, as well, for Purdue (29-6), which has won six of its past seven games. Senior guard P.J. Thompson tallied 11 points as Purdue posted its 14th victory by 20 or more points this season.
The Boilermakers face Butler in Sunday's second round but will do so without 7-foot-2 centre Isaac Haas, who suffered a fractured right elbow Friday.
Junior guard Kyle Allman Jr. scored 21 points for the Titans (20-12).
BUTLER 79, ARKANSAS 62
Kelan Martin and Kamar Baldwin combined for 51 points to power the Bulldogs (21-13) past the Razorbacks in Detroit.
Martin, a senior forward, scored 27 points on 9 of 16 shooting. Baldwin, a sophomore guard, contributed 24 points, hitting 9 of 17 shots. Martin, Baldwin and Tyler Wideman all had nine rebounds for Butler.
Senior guard Jaylen Barford led Arkansas (23-12) with 15 points, but made just 4 of 11 shots.
NORTH CAROLINA 84, LIPSCOMB 66
Kenny Williams scored 18 points to lead five players in double figures as the Tar Heels opened defense of their national title with a victory in Charlotte, N.C.
North Carolina (26-10) improved to 33-1 in NCAA Tournament games in its home state, including 12-0 in West Region action in Charlotte.
Theo Pinson and Joel Berry II, a pair of senior guards trying to help North Carolina reach the Final Four for the third year in a row, scored 15 and 14 points, respectively. Cameron Johnson added 12 points and Luke Maye had 10 points.
Kenny Cooper's 14 points and Rob Marberry's 13 paced Lipscomb (23-10), which was in the NCAA Tournament for the first time after winning the Atlantic Sun. North Carolina faces Texas A&M in Sunday's second round.
TEXAS A&M 73, PROVIDENCE 69
The seventh-seeded Aggies (2112) dominated the boards and got double-digit scoring from four players to advance in Charlotte, N.C.
Admon Gilder led the way with 18 points, while Tyler Davis added 14 points and 15 rebounds.
Robert Williams contributed 13 points and 14 boards for A&M, which shot 50 per cent from the field and owned a 40-21 rebounding advantage.
Rodney Bullock scored a game-high 22 points for the Friars (21-14), while Alpha Diallo hit for 21.
CINCINNATI 68, GEORGIA STATE 53
Jarron Cumberland finished with a game-high 27 points and 11 rebounds to help the Bearcats (31-4) pull away late in South Region action in Nashville.
Kyle Washington added 13 points and Cincinnati leading scorer Gary Clark added 11 points with 13 rebounds to advance the Bearcats to the second round vs. Nevada.
Panthers (24-11) leading scorer D'Marcus Simonds scored 24 points and Isaiah Williams had 10 points off the bench - the team's only other double-digit scorer.
NEVADA 87, TEXAS 83 (OT)
Junior forward Caleb Martin hit three three-pointers and assisted twin brother Cody on another hoop as the Wolf Pack exploded offensively in overtime to outlast the Longhorns in Nashville.
A seventh loss in their past 11 games ended the season for Texas (19-15), which led by as many as four in the extra session.
Caleb Martin's biggest hoop came at the 2:29 mark of overtime, giving Nevada its first lead since 5-2 in the early going. The three-pointer put Nevada up 7877. Martin then buried another 3-pointer on the Wolf Pack's following possession.
Martin had 18 points, 10 rebounds and five assists for Nevada (28-7), which had been eliminated by Iowa State in its NCAA Tournament opener last season.
Marshall forward Ajdin Penava scores a basket ahead of Wichita State Shockers guard Landry Shamet, left, and forward Darral Willis Jr. during March Madness on Friday.
ORLANDO JORGE RAMIREZ/USA TODAY SPORTS