Belmont gets 1st NCAA tourney win, tops Temple in First Four
By The Associated Press undefined
DAYTON, Ohio (AP) — Kevin McClain scored 29 points and led the decisive second-half run as Belmont got its first NCAA Tournament win, pulling away to an 81-70 victory Tuesday night and ending Temple coach Fran Dunphy’s career in the First Four.
The 11th-seeded Bruins (27-5) play Maryland on Thursday in the East Region.
Belmont got at-large bid after losing to Murray State in the Ohio Valley Conference Tournament title game. The Bruins showed that the selection committee’s faith was not misplaced, getting the breakthrough win on their eighth try.
The loss sent Temple (23-10) into a transition at the top. Dunphy is retiring after his 13th season at Temple, where he replaced John Chaney. Dunphy previously coached 17 seasons at Penn.
He was hoping to coach another day, but Belmont’s high-scoring offense pulled away at the end. Senior guard Shizz Alston Jr. led the Owls with 21 points.
FAIRLEIGH DICKINSON 82, PRAIRIE VIEW A&M 76
DAYTON, Ohio (AP) — Darnell Edge scored a career-high 33 points, and Fairleigh Dickinson rallied to win its first ever NCAA Tournament game, taking down Prairie View A&M in the tourney opener.
Edge was 7 for 9 from beyond the 3-point line, and Jahil Jenkins scored 20 of his 22 points in the second half for the Knights (21-13), who advanced out of the First Four to play No. 1 seed Gonzaga on Thursday in Salt Lake City.
Prairie View (22-13), also seeking its first tournament win, built up 13-point leads in both halves, but Fairleigh Dickinson took control in the second half behind the shooting of Edge and Jenkins.
A 3-pointer by Gary Blackston pulled Prairie View back to within two points, 78-76, but a layup from Mike Holloway Jr. and a pair of free throws by Edge with 17 seconds left sealed it for Fairleigh Dickinson.
Blackston led the Panthers with 26 points and Devonte Patterson had 17.