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UH bows out in WAC semifinals

New Mexico State fends off comeback bid

March 10, 2012
By TIM BOOTH , The Associated Press

LAS VEGAS - Even though there were still 10 minutes remaining, Hernst Laroche's 3-pointer while being hacked was a big reason New Mexico State avoided a massive collapse.

More importantly, the Aggies' hopes for a second NCAA tournament bid in the last three seasons are still alive.

Wendall McKines led five New Mexico State players in double figures with 22 points, Laroche's rare four-point play stemmed the University of Hawaii's rally from a 20-point deficit, and the Aggies held on for a 92-81 win over the Rainbow Warriors in the Western Athletic Conference men's basketball tournament semifinals on Friday.

Article Photos

Hawaii’s Jeremiah Ostrowski and New Mexico State’s Hernst Laroche battle for a loose ball during the Aggies’ 92-81 victory over the Rainbow Warriors on Friday in the semifinals of the Western Athletic Conference tournament.

AP photo

Second-seeded New Mexico State (25-9) will face No. 5 seed Louisiana Tech in the final today.

"We've been working since August. We expected to get here," McKines said.

New Mexico State jumped out to 17-0 and 22-2 leads, but the sixth-seeded Rainbow Warriors were within single digits by halftime, then hit their first three shots of the second half and got as close as 61-60 with 10:35 left, but Laroche's momentum-turning basket followed - the foul was on Jeremiah Ostrowski.

"We cut that sucker to one, I thought that was a great sign," said UH coach Gib Arnold. "That kid hit the 3 and we foul them, it went to five really quick. That was not a good sign."

Shaquille Stokes scored 21 points for the Warriors (16-16), who will play in the Big West next season. Vander Joaquim added 17 points.

"To go up and battle against that team and have a chance to win there at the end was something that I am pleased with," Arnold said. "Whenever the bleeding stopped, I thought we started playing pretty good."

New Mexico State had beaten UH by 42 in Las Cruces on Feb. 23.

"For us to beat them the way that we did at our house the last time we played them and then to come out and play with this kind of passion speaks volumes to where (Arnold) has taken that program," Aggies coach Marvin Menzies said.

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COLLEGE BASKETBALL

Friday's Results

MEN TOURNAMENT

Atlantic 10 Conference

Quarterfinals

Saint Louis 78, La Salle 71

St. Bonaventure 71, Saint Joseph's 68

Massachusetts 77, Temple 71

Xavier 70, Dayton 69

Atlantic Coast Conference

Quarterfinals

Duke 60, Virginia Tech 56

Florida St. 82, Miami 71

NC State 67, Virginia 64

North Carolina 85, Maryland 69

Big 12 Conference

Semifinals

Baylor 81, Kansas 72

Missouri 81, Texas 67

Big East Conference

Semifinals

Cincinnati 71, Syracuse 68

Louisville 64, Notre Dame 50

Big Ten Conference

Quarterfinals

Michigan 73, Minnesota 69, OT

Michigan St. 92, Iowa 75

Ohio St. 88, Purdue 71

Wisconsin 79, Indiana 71

Big West Conference

Semifinals

Long Beach St. 68, UC Irvine 57

UC Santa Barbara 64, Cal Poly 52

Conference USA

Semifinals

Marshall 73, Southern Miss. 62

Memphis 83, UCF 52

Great West Conference

Semifinals

NJIT 88, Utah Valley 78, OT

North Dakota 63, Texas-Pan American 59

Mid-American Conference

Semifinals

Akron 78, Kent St. 74

Ohio 77, Buffalo 74

Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference

Semifinals

Bethune-Cookman 81, Hampton 72

Norfolk St. 58, Florida A&M 46

Mountain West Conference

Semifinals

New Mexico 72, UNLV 67

San Diego St. 79, Colorado St. 69

Pacific-12 Conference

Semifinals

Colorado 70, California 59

Oregon St. 72, Arizona 61

Southeastern Conference

Quarterfinals

Florida 66, Alabama 63

Kentucky 60, LSU 51

Mississippi 77, Tennessee 72, OT

Vanderbilt 63, Georgia 41

Southwestern Athletic Conference

Semifinals

MVSU 71, Ark.-Pine Bluff 64

Texas Southern 60, Alcorn St. 55

Western Athletic Conference

Semifinals

Louisiana Tech 78, Nevada 73

New Mexico St. 92, Hawaii 81

* * *

WOMEN TOURNAMENT

Big 12 Conference

Semifinals

Baylor 86, Kansas St. 65

Texas A&M 79, Oklahoma 66

Big Sky Conference

Semifinals

Idaho St. 70, Sacramento St. 57

N. Colorado 51, Montana St. 43

Big South Conference

First Round

Charleston Southern 57, Campbell 53

High Point 78, Coastal Carolina 57

Liberty 71, UNC Asheville 50

Radford 62, Winthrop 56

Big West Conference

Semifinals

Long Beach St. 51, Cal Poly 48

UC Santa Barbara 84, Pacific 66

Colonial Athletic Association

Quarterfinals

Delaware 74, Old Dominion 54

Drexel 65, VCU 61

James Madison 64, George Mason 54

UNC Wilmington 94, Hofstra 87

Conference USA

Semifinals

Tulane 63, Memphis 44

UTEP 60, UAB 49

Great West Conference

Semifinals

North Dakota 88, Texas-Pan American 48

Utah Valley 63, NJIT 52

Horizon League

Semifinals

Detroit 78, Wright St. 70

Green Bay 73, Ill.-Chicago 53

Mid-American Conference

Semifinals

Cent. Michigan 69, Bowling Green 66

E. Michigan 59, Toledo 57

Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference

Semifinals

Hampton 64, Coppin St. 43

Howard 51, Florida A&M 43

Missouri Valley Conference

Quarterfinals

Creighton 53, N. Iowa 46

Drake 56, Illinois St. 54

Missouri St. 58, Bradley 54

Wichita St. 70, Indiana St. 49

Mountain West Conference

Semifinals

New Mexico 51, Boise St. 50

San Diego St. 73, Wyoming 55

Pacific-12 Conference

Semifinals

California 64, Washington St. 49

Stanford 52, Arizona St. 43

Southland Conference

Championship

McNeese St. 60, Stephen F. Austin 56

Southwestern Athletic Conference

Semifinals

Grambling St. 67, Alcorn St. 41

Prairie View 58, MVSU 55

Western Athletic Conference

Semifinals

Fresno St. 80, Idaho 55

Louisiana Tech 73, Utah St. 69

 
 

 

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