Men's college basketball tournament roundup

Mount St. Mary's reaches its peak

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Associated Press / March 19, 2008

The Mount finally got The Win.

Jeremy Goode scored 21 points last night, and Mount St. Mary's got its first NCAA Tournament victory, beating Coppin State, 69-60, at Dayton, Ohio, in an opening-round game with two teams that know a lot about losing.

The Mountaineers (19-14) won their last five games to shed their losing record and make the tournament, then got the one victory that's always been well out of reach.

In its two other NCAA appearances, Mount St. Mary's lost to Kentucky by 46 points in 1995 and to Michigan State by 23 in 1999.

No time to savor this one. Tournament reality hits Friday, when the Mount plays top-seeded North Carolina in Raleigh - virtually the Tar Heels' backyard.

Fans in the crowd of 8,464 at University of Dayton Arena held up signs calling on the play-in winner to "Bury N. Carolina."

Tough chance for that. A 16th seed has never taken down a No. 1.

But, that's a challenge for later. For a few sweet minutes last night, Mount St. Mary's got to savor a breakthrough win over another Maryland school separated by about 60 miles.

Coppin State (16-21) became the first team to reach the tournament with 20 losses, and the Eagles looked out of place in the closing minutes. They went five minutes without scoring, and that allowed Mount St. Mary's to break it open.

Goode, a 5-foot-9-inch sophomore guard who grew up in Charlotte, was the spark for Mount St. Mary's up-tempo offense. He did it all, driving to the basket and hitting fadeaway jumpers over much taller players.

Goode also hit four free throws in the last 27 seconds.

Tywain McKee led Coppin State with 15 points.

NIT - Cavel Witter hit a 3-point shot with 3.2 seconds left to finish Creighton's comeback from a 17-point deficit in the second half and give the Bluejays a 74-73 victory over Rhode Island in the first round at Omaha, Neb.

Creighton (22-10) still trailed, 70-58, with 3:14 left, but the Rams wouldn't score another field goal.

P'Allen Stinnett and Booker Woodfox each had 22 points, with Stinnett scoring 18 in the second half.

Will Daniels led Rhode Island (21-12) with 16 points.

College Basketball Invitational - Jerome Tillman scored 21 points and grabbed 11 rebounds as host Ohio (20-12) overcame a 39-point performance from Brown's Damon Huffman to defeat the Bears (19-10), 80-74, in a first-round matchup.

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