Big East Tourney: First Round Recap, Second Round Preview

straitpinkieCorrespondent IMarch 11, 2009

The morning session of the 2009 Big East Tournament saw two teams on the outer edge of the bubble completely fall off, as Cincinnati and Georgetown both lost. The night saw favorites hold court.


DePaul 67, Cincinnati 57

Will Walker and Dar Tucker scored 17 points apiece, and DePaul ended its 18-game losing streak and got its first conference win of the season.

Mac Koshwal had 12 points and nine rebounds for DePaul, which last won Dec. 28 against Alcorn State.

Deonta Vaughn had 15 points for the Bearcats (18-14), who have not won a game in the Big East Tournament ever (0-3).

Cincinnati led 41-38 before the Blue Demons went on a 15-2 run during which the Bearcats missed 13 of 14 shots from the field.

Tucker, limited to five minutes in the first half because of foul trouble, scored all his points in the second half—nine in the final 5:30.

The 16th-seeded Blue Demons (9-23) avoided the inevitability of the most losses in a season in school history for at least one more day by advancing to the second round, where they will face eighth-seeded Providence.


St. John’s 64, Georgetown 59

Paris Horne scored 23 points, and St. John’s beat Georgetown 64-59 on Tuesday, the Red Storm’s first win in the Big East tournament since 2003.

Sean Evans had 12 points and 13 rebounds for St. John’s (16-16), which made just one appearance in the tournament at Madison Square Garden over the past five years.

Chris Wright had 14 points and Greg Monroe added 13 for the 12th-seeded Hoyas (16-14), who were ranked as high as No. 9 in the country this season but have lost 11 of their last 15 games.

Georgetown used a 12-0 run to take a 49-46 lead with 6:04 to play. Horne’s three-point play with 3:42 left gave the Red Storm the lead for good at 53-52, and they went 6-of-7 from the free throw line the rest of the way, finishing 24-of-29 from there for the game.

The 13th-seeded Red Storm advanced to the second round, where they will face fifth-seeded and 21st-ranked Marquette.


Notre Dame 61, Rutgers 50

Tory Jackson scored all 12 of his points in the second half to lead Notre Dame to a 61-50 victory over Rutgers in the opening round of the Big East tournament.

The Irish came in averaging 77.6 points per game, fifth in the 16-team conference, but with center Luke Harangody having an off night and Rutgers dictating the pace, Notre Dame came away with a win courtesy of its defense.

Hamady Ndiaye had 14 points for the 15th-seeded Scarlet Knights (11-21), who lost 18 of their last 20 games.

The Scarlet Knights managed to get within 55-50 on another drive by Corey Chandler with 1:11 left, but free throws by Tyrone Nash and Ryan Ayers sandwiched a breakaway layup by Chandler for the final margin.

Harangody had seven points on 3-for-17 shooting and grabbed 11 rebounds for the Irish, who were outrebounded 46-38.

Kyle McAlarney added 11 points for the 10th-seeded Fighting Irish (18-13), who will play seventh-seeded West Virginia in the first game of the nightcap, tip-off at 7 pm.


Seton Hall 68, South Florida 54

Jeremy Hazell shot 10-14 from the field, including 4-of-6 from downtown to lead all scorers with 25 points. Eugene Harvey added 14 and Robert “Stix” Mitchell 13 for the 11th-seeded Pirates (17-14).

Seton Hall will face sixth-seeded Syracuse 23-8 (11-7) at 9 pm Wednesday night.