Josh Adams put on a show in the first half of the Mountain West quarterfinals, scoring 18 of Wyoming’s first 22 points. He punctuated the performance with this dunk.
A felony arrested warrant has been issued for Creighton senior point guard Maurice Watson Jr., according to the Omaha World-Hearld.
According to the outlet’s breaking news reporter Andrew J. Nelson, Watson will be charged with first-degree sexual assault. News came out earlier on Thursday that the star guard had been accused of sexual assault by a female student earlier this month.
The allegation is that Watson sexually assaulted a 19-year-old acquaintance in the bathroom of an Omaha residence around 3 a.m. on Feb. 4. She filed a report later that morning.
Watson, 23, began his career at Boston University before transferring to Creighton in 2015. He has been one of college basketball’s top floor generals during his time with the Bluejays. He was in the midst of an All-American season — and Creighton was a Final Four-caliber team — before he tore his ACL on Jan. 16 vs. Xavier.
Watson was suspended from the program on Feb. 13 for, “alleged actions that are contrary to university policies and core values.” He will not be involved in senior night festivities on Feb. 28.
TEMPE, Ariz. (AP) T.J. Leaf scored 25 points, and No. 5 UCLA survived an upset bid by Arizona State with an 87-75 victory Thursday night.
The Bruins (25-3, 12-3 Pac-12) won their sixth straight game. Aaron Holiday added 17 points and Thomas Welsh had eight points and 11 rebounds in 18 minutes.
Torian Graham led Arizona State with 28 points and Kodi Justice added 19. The Sun Devils hit 14 3-pointers but were outrebounded 49-30.
The Bruins’ size made a difference throughout the game, with UCLA capitalizing on plenty of second-chance opportunities and taking advantage of Arizona State’s four-guard lineup with a major rebounding edge.
The Sun Devils (13-16, 6-10) scored the first seven points of the second half and got a near capacity crowd on its feet when Shannon Evans II made a fastbreak layup to trim UCLA’s lead to 45-43.
Evans’ dunk made it 50-49 at the 15:22 mark, but UCLA went on a 14-5 run capped by a 3-pointer by Holiday off an offensive rebound. The Bruins had a 31-7 edge in second-chance points and 50-22 in points in the paint.
Holiday hit a 3 for a 74-60 lead with 7:29 to play and the Sun Devils couldn’t rally again.
Arizona State led 14-10 6 minutes into the game and thanks in part to UCLA’s early turnovers. But the Bruins hit five straight shots, three for freshman big man Ike Anigbogu inside.
Anigbogu’s dunk with 6:16 to go in the first half gave UCLA a 29-21 lead, and Arizona State was forced to rely on perimeter shots with UCLA controlling the low post at both ends. The Bruins went ahead 40-27 on a follow by Welsh with 3:18 left, and led by as many as 14 before finishing the half with a 45-36 lead.
The Sun Devils didn’t make a first-half substitution and got 17 points from Graham, who hit four of his team’s seven 3-pointers in the first 20 minutes.
UCLA: The Bruins can still finish in second place in the Pac-12, but need a win at No. 4 Arizona in one of the nation’s marquee matchups this weekend in Tucson, Arizona, for starters. They will likely have to win out and get help from the teams that play current second-place team Oregon. Either way, UCLA looks bound for the NCAA Tournament.
Arizona State: The Sun Devils dropped to 0-7 against Top 25 opponents this season, and still have one more to go in No. 4 Arizona on March 4.
UCLA: Anigbogu scored a career-high 12 points on 5-of-7 shooting. … The Bruins have won all six games they have played in February.
ARIZONA STATE: Graham has 11 20-point games this season and three in his last four. … Obinna Oleka recorded his 14th double-double of the season with 12 points and 11 rebounds.
UCLA freshman sensation Lonzo Ball finished with just four points, well under his per-game average of 16.9. Ball, UCLA’s leading scorer this season, also missed a couple of minutes in the first half to get his right ankle checked, briefly returning to the locker room. He returned to action just before halftime and ended up with 11 rebounds and five assists.
UCLA: At No. 4 Arizona on Saturday, then home for the final two games of the regular season against the Washington schools.
Arizona State: Hosts Southern Cal on Sunday, the second-to-last home of the regular season.
No. 16 Wisconsin has lost three of its last four games. The worst of those defeats came on Thursday night, as Ohio State, which by 20 inside five minutes remaining in regulation, blew out the Badgers, 83-73, in Columbus.
Jae’Sean Tate, who registered a double-double before halftime, set the tone early with energy. The Buckeyes’ defense got the Badgers out of sync, taking Ethan Happ out of the game by doubling the post. Happ was actually taken out of the game after picking up his second foul. The likely all-Big 10 first team selection played six minutes, recording zero points through the first 20 minutes.
Without Happ, the Wisconsin offense is out of sorts. That’s only compounded when Nigel Hayes is off, which he was on Thursday night. The Ohio native, in his final collegiate game in his home state, had seven points and four rebounds in 35 minutes.
The only player who was on for the Badgers was Bronson Koenig, who is still working his way back from an injury that kept him out of last week’s loss to Michigan. He had 14 (off 4-of-7 3-point shooting) of his 27 points in the first half. The rest of the team shot 29 percent, contributing 17 points in the first.
Not surprisingly, the Buckeyes took a 44-31 lead heading into the break. Imagine how lopsided that would look had the Badgers not sunk seven 3-pointers?
Wisconsin opened the day as a projected No. 5 seed in the latest NBC Sports’ bracketology. That’s most definitely going to change once Dave Ommen updates his bracket. It should be pointed out that last year, the Badgers made the Sweet 16 as a No. 7 seed. And that team had its issues as well, but had a much better résumé heading into March.
The Badgers are a game out of first place in the Big Ten, but a closer look at their NCAA Tournament résumé isn’t all that impressive. They’re 2-2 vs. the RPI Top-25. Those two wins both came at home against Michigan and Northwestern. The Wildcats are currently projected as a No. 8 seed. The Wolverines are slotted as a No. 9. Also, Wisconsin became signature wins for both those programs last week.
And up next for Wisconsin: a road trip to East Lansing on Sunday. Michigan State would also like to punch its ticket to dance by beating a ranked opponent.
Will the Badgers accommodate the Spartans, or will they end this current slide and head into tournament time with some momentum?
CINCINNATI (AP) After a dominant first half, No. 15 Cincinnati relaxed and wound up sweating one out.
Jacob Evans III scored 12 of his 15 points during the Bearcats’ lopsided first half on Thursday night, and they let most of a big lead slip away before holding on for their 25th straight home victory, 87-74 over Memphis.
Cincinnati (25-3, 14-1 American Athletic) led by as many as 24 points during its highest-scoring opening half in conference play this season, pulling ahead 51-32 at the break. The Tigers cut the lead to six points before fading.
“We got off to a big lead, and in the second half I feel we started to coast a little bit,” Evans said. “We can’t do that. If we want to make a deep run in March, we can’t take a half off against any team. Our energy on defense went down.”
The Bearcats’ front line dominated on offense. Gary Clark had 13 points and nine rebounds while Kyle Washington had 16 points and six rebounds. The problem was the sluggish defense in the second half, which left shooters open.
“For about 30 minutes, I thought we played about as well as we can play,” coach Mick Cronin said. “My halftime speech gets an F. I talked to our guys about defense. Our defense was nonexistent for most of the second half. We learned our lessons.”
Memphis (18-10, 8-7 ) has dropped a season-high three straight. Jeremiah Martin led the Tigers with 23 points and 11 assists. Dedric Lawson had 21 points with 10 rebounds.
“They were a little bit intimidated to start the first half because (Cincinnati) was making shots,” Memphis coach Tubby Smith said. “And when you get in a hole like that, it’s tough.”
The Tigers cut the lead to 75-69 on Martin’s three-point play with 5:18 left. Evans’ 3-pointer – his only basket of the second half – ended the comeback. It was his only 3-pointer of the game.
Memphis: Lawson got his 35th double-double, the sixth-most by an active player. His 18 double-doubles this season are a career high for the sophomore. He has 282 rebounds this season. The AAC record is 321 by UConn’s Daniel Hamilton.
Cincinnati: The Bearcats’ 25 straight home wins match the second-longest streak at Fifth Third Arena, which opened in 1989. The arena record is 41 straight wins from 1997-2000.
The Bearcats have won four straight since a 60-51 loss at SMU on Feb. 12, minimizing the damage of their only conference loss.
The Tigers were playing from behind the entire time because of their horrible start. They missed 10 of their first 15 shots – Lawson was 0 for 3 – while the Bearcats rolled out to a 26-11 lead.
Lawson got a loose ball while sitting under the basket in the second half and took a shot that bounced off the rim. After the slow start, he ended up 9 of 16 from the field.
Freshman Jarron Cumberland sat out Cincinnati’s last game because of a curfew violation. He was back on Thursday and had nine points in 22 minutes.
Memphis: The Tigers host Houston on Saturday. They won at Houston 79-67 in overtime on Jan. 19.
Cincinnati: The Bearcats play at Central Florida on Saturday. They beat Central Florida 60-50 on Feb. 8.
More AP college basketball: http://collegebasketball.ap.org
There wasn’t much love being spread in the Maine basketball locker room on Valentine’s Day.
A locker room fight led to the suspensions of five players, including the team’s leading scorer. According to Larry Mahoney of the Bangor Daily News, who obtained the police report, the incident was the result of teammates Wes Myers and Marko Pirovic arguing over locker room music on Feb. 14.
Myers wanted the music off, Pirovic, who stands five inches taller and outweighs Myers by 25 pounds, refused. This led to both throwing punches, one of which connected on Pirovic’s face, breaking his jaw.
Jaquan McKennon, Ilija Stojiljkovic and Dusan Majstorovic were all suspended, but reinstated on Wednesday, for telling head trainer Ryan Taylor that Pirovic’s injuries resulted from him falling in the shower.
Myers, a junior guard averaging a team-best 16.9 points per game, remains suspended indefinitely.
Pirovic declined to press charges. All involved could still face punishment from the university, according to the Bangor Daily News.
It’s been a long season for the Black Bears. Maine owns the America East’s worst record at 6-24 (3-12). Outside of a modest three-game winning streak in late January, the Black Bears have not won a game in 2017. They close out the regular season on Saturday at home against Binghamton.