College Basketball

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NCAA Game Summary - Milwaukee vs. Villanova



(Thursday, March 20th)

Final Score: Villanova 73, Milwaukee 53

Buffalo, NY (SportsNetwork.com) - Darrun Hilliard had 16 points and Villanova pulled away in the second half Thursday night to beat Milwaukee 73-53 in the NCAA Tournament.

The second-seeded Wildcats outscored the 15th-seeded Panthers 46-30 after the break and advanced in the East Region to face seventh-seeded Connecticut on Saturday.

JayVaughn Pinkston had 13 points and James Bell scored 12 for Villanova (29-4), which won its first regular-season Big East title in eight years but fell to Seton Hall on a buzzer beater in the quarterfinals of the conference tournament last Thursday, snapping a six-game winning streak.

Austin Arians scored 17 points to lead Horizon League champion Milwaukee (21-14), which had a five-game winning streak snapped after an unexpected run through the conference tournament.

"This experience was unbelievable," said Arians. "We were picked to finish last (in the conference) in the preseason poll, and we ended up winning the conference tournament and getting the chance to come here, which was unbelievable.

"Every guy on this team has stepped up at some point during the year. I can't give enough credit to every single person on this team. Everybody had their moments and had a great time doing what we accomplished this year. It was awesome."

Either way the bracket above them shook out, the Wildcats were going to see an old rival in the next round.

Connecticut -- Villanova's former Big East foe -- needed overtime to get rid of Saint Joseph's, which plays an annual rivalry game against the Wildcats in the Philadelphia area's Big 5.

Prior to Thursday's game, Villanova had just one win in three NCAA Tournament appearances since losing to North Carolina in the 2009 Final Four.

The Wildcats turned it on late in the first half. After Milwaukee took a 23-18 lead on Matt Tiby's layup, they scored the last nine points before the break, with Hilliard getting five.

The overall run was 14-0 extending into the second half. Pinkston scored the last five points himself on a three-point play and a layup, giving Villanova a 32-23 lead.

Milwaukee never got closer than four after that and the Wildcats pulled away down the stretch.

"That was not, as everyone here knows, a 20-point game," said Villanova coach Jay Wright. "Milwaukee is a really tough team and hard to play against. Their defense was outstanding.

"I thought our patience and our defense got us through the first half until we could hit some shots and get some stops and get out in transition the second half. But I give them a lot of credit. I was really, really proud of our guys not making shots and still continuing to defend and play hard."

The Panthers made the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 2006, when they lost in the second round while making their third appearance in four years.

They have big upsets on their resume, making the Sweet 16 as a No. 12 seed in 2005 under Bruce Pearl after beating Alabama and Boston College. A year later, they knocked off Oklahoma as a No. 11.

Game Notes

Milwaukee represented the Horizon League in the tournament after going just 7-9 in conference play during the regular season. Its run through the league tourney included an upset of top seed Green Bay in the semifinals.

03/21 01:01:44 ET

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Scoreboard
Local
1st
ND 0
DUKE 0
 
8:30pm Tonight
SAN
CHA
9:00pm Tonight
NCSU
CLEM
9:00pm Tonight
MEM
ECU
2nd
PHI 28
DET 16
 
1st
CLE 29
POR 19
 
7:30pm Tonight
TOR
SAC
8:00pm Tonight
MIN
BOS
8:00pm Tonight
ATL
BRK
8:00pm Tonight
HOU
DAL
8:00pm Tonight
NOP
DEN
8:00pm Tonight
NYK
OKC
8:30pm Tonight
SAN
CHA
9:00pm Tonight
UTA
LAC
10:30pm Tonight
PHO
WAS
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VERM 11
GTDNS 15
 
1st
NAVY 22
AMER 24
 
1st
UMBC 10
BING 20
 
1st
JMU 21
DEL 29
 
1st
RICH 33
DUQ 15
 
1st
UNCW 27
ELON 12
 
1st
USB 14
HART 18
 
1st
WMARY 42
HOF 15
 
1st
COL 21
LAF 16
 
1st
PSU 28
MINN 20
 
1st
MAINE 6
UNH 19
 
1st
DREX 11
NE 12
 
1st
FORD 24
RIU 19
 
1st
SFLA 16
SMU 13
 
1st
MARQ 25
SHU 28
 
1st
LSU 20
SCAR 15
 
1st
UCF 14
TEMPL 20
 
1st
LONG 13
UNCA 20
 
1st
FSU 12
WAKE 21
 
1st
CCAR 24
WINT 23
 
1st
OU 19
WRST 28
 
1st
ND 0
DUKE 0
 
7:30pm Tonight
GHND 0
HC 0
 
7:30pm Tonight
CSOU
RAD
 
7:30pm Tonight
OKLA
TTU
8:00pm Tonight
BRAD
DRAK
 
8:00pm Tonight
BUCK
LEH
 
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WICHS
LOYC
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ILLST
MIZST
 
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PEAY
MORE
 
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SDKST
NEOM
 
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ARST
ORST
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HOU
RICE
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SILL
NIOWA
9:00pm Tonight
NCSU
CLEM
9:00pm Tonight
MEM
ECU
9:00pm Tonight
MIAMI
GT
9:00pm Tonight
PURD
IND
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TCU
KU
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BC
LOU
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MISS
MSST
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CREI
STJ
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SJST
AFA
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ARZ
OREG
11:00pm Tonight
WASH
STAN
7:30pm Tonight
NJD
TOR
8:00pm Tonight
WAS
PIT
10:30pm Tonight
LOS
CHI