After a very light weekend in college basketball, Monday had some spine-tingling games.
Eastern Washington stunned Indiana at Assembly Hall, 88-86.
Villanova put on a shooting and defensive clinic in Brooklyn easily upending the Havoc defense of VCU by a 77-53 count. Villanova led by only two, 32-30 at halftime.
Even more impressive and lopsided was Louisville easily dispatching Savannah State. The score was a mind boggling 29-0 lead 15:58 into the contest, and 41-7 at the half. According to STATS, Inc., the last time a team was shutout in the first half was Duke leading North Carolina by a converted touchdown 7-0 on February 24, 1979. Khaleen Pinkett’s jumper with 83 seconds left in the half ending a shooting drought that encompassed 23 straight misses from the opening tap onward.
The final score, if you were curious to know was 87-26 and only three players on the Cardinals reached double figures for the night.
Maui continues to impress, even one quarterfinal went to double overtime
Purdue did not provide much effort against Kansas State to begin the 32nd annual Maui Invitational Tournament at the famed Lahaina Civic Center on the island of Maui.
The final was 88-79, even though the Boilermakers scored 55 in the second half to make the score a bit more respectable.
The second quarterfinal had Arizona toying with Missouri, 72-53 and Pitt had very few difficulties with the host school Chaminade winning 81-65.
But for those fans who might have missed out on the fourth game, it was an instant classic. It did not end until 2:15 Eastern time, a respectable 9:15 p.m. in Hawaii.
San Diego State needed two overtimes to edge out a pesky BYU squad 92-87. Senior Aqeel Quinn made the big play, recovering his own block shot and stepping out behind the three-point line for the deciding basket.
Give the Cougars a lot of credit for hanging tough. A jumper converted by senior Tyler Haws gave BYU a brief 76-71 in the first extra stanza. Even though BYU hit 13 of 30 from downtown, the Aztecs reeled off a 12-7 run to put the game away.
Rebounding really was a telling story in this game:
San Diego State won by double digits, 48-38 although BYU held a slight edge cleaning things up on the offensive glass 17-15.
San Diego State also missed nearly half of their free throws, going only 19 of 31 on the night.
Milestone win for popular coach
Monday’s victory put Steve Fisher in some very select company. He is the latest NCAA coach to post his 500th career victory. It was also his 316th win at the school, this after a few rather interesting years in coaching the Fab Five at Michigan way back in the day. That win ties him with George Ziegenfuss for the all-time school record for coaching wins.
What to Watch For Tonight
The second semifinal might be more interesting than the first in Hawaii. Expect Arizona to pretty much manhandle Kansas State in the first semifinal (both games on ESPN right after the weekly CFP rankings announcement).
Could a possible Arizona-San Diego State final match loom for Turkey Eve?
Not if Jaime Dixon and Pitt have something to say about it.
Future Maui tournament teams announced
Final nugget on this Tuesday before another full night of heaping hoops action had Maui announce, as is their custom–the 7 teams joining host school Chaminade for future Turkey Week tournaments on the Big Island.
The list includes the following schools:
2015: Indiana, Kansas, UCLA, St. John’s (NY), Wake Forest, Vanderbilt, and UNLV.
2016: UConn, Georgetown, North Carolina, Oklahoma State, Oregon, Tennessee, and Wisconsin.
See you later tonight, pending on if there are more upsets–then, I will try to update a few of those games early on in the evening.