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Michael Dixon Jr. helps lead No. 8 Memphis past No. 9 George Washington

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Memphis’ four-guard attack has led the way for much of the 2013-14 season, and in their 71-66 win over East Region No. 9 seed George Washington two of those four were key factors in the outcome.

Joe Jackson accounted for 15 points, six assists and five rebounds, but it was Michael Dixon Jr.’s play down the stretch that helped Memphis withstand multiple George Washington rallies. Dixon, a fifth-year transfer from Missouri, scored 19 points off the bench with 11 of those coming in the final 9:41 of the game.

As a team Memphis struggled from beyond the arc, making just six of their twenty-two attempts with Chris Crawford shooting 3-for-10 on the night. Those misses from the perimeter factored into George Washington’s ability to cut eight and ten-point margins down to four at multiple points in the second half.

But whenever the Colonials looked to get even closer, Memphis would find a way to get a stop and then convert on the other end. That proved to be the difference between going home after one game and Josh Pastner earning the second NCAA tournament of his tenure at Memphis.

The Tigers will more than likely face No. 1 seed Virginia in the Round of 32 (unless Coastal Carolina makes history), and their ability to get the ball inside will be key. At times the guards can resort to hoisting challenged jumpers, and that’s when the Tigers are at their worst offensively. However if the Tigers look to get the ball inside through the use of dribble penetration and post feeds to their big men, they become a tougher team to defend.

That’s what Memphis will need to do on Sunday, and while it’s difficult to do so against Virginia’s pack line defense the Tigers are talented enough to do so with Jackson and Dixon leading the way.

VIDEO: Monmouth hits a game-winner, Bench Mob member tries to disrobe

King Rice
AP
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Monmouth used a 17-2 run in the final minutes to beat Rider on Friday night, a win that will keep the Hawks within striking distance of the kind of an at-large bid to the NCAA tournament should they fall in the MAAC tourney.

The run was capped by star point guard Justin Robinson, who buried this three with three seconds left to put Monmouth up for good, 79-78:

No. 17 Arizona erases double-digit deficit to beat UCLA

Arizona coach Sean Miller reacts to a foul call during the first half of Arizona's NCAA college basketball game against UCLA, Friday, Feb 12, 2016, in Tucson, Ariz. (AP Photo/Rick Scuteri)
(AP Photo/Rick Scuteri)
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Allonzo Trier scored 15 of his 18 points in the second half and Parker Jackson-Cartwright scored 16 points in his second career start as No. 17 Arizona knocked off UCLA, 81-75, in Tucson on Friday night.

UCLA was up by as much as 11 points in the first half and took a ten point lead into half time, but in the second half, the Bruins were eventually done in by foul trouble and the stronger front line of the Wildcats.

Ryan Anderson and Kaleb Tarczewski were dominant down the stretch. The duo combined to score 12 of the last 23 point for the Wildcats, including the bucket that put the Wildcats ahead for the first time since early in the first half. Off of a missed free throw, UCLA’s Thomas Welsh battled with Tarczewski for the rebound, but when Welsh finally seemed to gain control of the loose ball, Anderson knocked it out of his hands and bullied through Jonah Bolden for a layup.

All told, those two combined for 20 points and 27 boards, seven of which were offensive. They also managed to foul out both Welsh and Tony Parker, although some of the calls that went against UCLA down the stretch were questionable.

The win keeps Arizona within a game of first place Oregon in the Pac-12 standings and tied for second with No. 23 USC, who will be visiting the McKale Center on Sunday night.