Duke, Stanford, Maryland and USC advance in NCAA


Reuters

NEW YORK Duke and Stanford, who have jockeyed for the top spot in the nation’s college rankings this season, advanced in their NCAA regional semifinal games on Thursday.

Stanford, after getting a wake-up call when Cincinnati took the lead at the half, rallied to ease by the Bearcats 78-65 in their West Region game in Anaheim, California.

Duke beat UCLA, 76-63, in an East Region game in Philadelphia, where USC defeated Kentucky, 80-76, for Cal’s first trip to the “Elite Eight” in 47 years.

And in Anaheim, Maryland beat Georgetown, 76-66.

Duke will play USC in the East Region final, and Stanford and Maryland battle in Saturday’s first game with a trip to the Final Four on the line.

In the Duke UCLA matchup, Jason Williams poured in 34 points and Shane Battier added 24 for Duke.

In a six-minute shooting orgy in the second half, Williams hit 19 straight points for Duke.

Battier, the college player of the year, also snatched 11 rebounds for the top seeded Duke.

Duke scored the first seven points of the second half to take a 40-28 lead. UCLA rebounded with a 9-0 effort to get within three points.

But Williams soon ended their dreams of a comeback.

The sophomore point guard hit a three-pointer to begin his scoring binge against UCLA, which played the entire second half with leading scorer Jason Kapono in foul trouble after he picked up his fourth in the final minute of the first half.

After Kapono made the first of two free throws, Williams scored seven straight points on an alley-oop layup, a driving layup and a three-pointers from the right wing that gave Duke a 50-38 advantage with just under 13 left.

Battier stymies UCLA come back bid

For all intents and purposes, Battier ended any chances of a UCLA comeback by completing a three-point play to give the Blue Devils a 68-55 lead with 304 remaining.

Earl Watson scored 17 points and Jason Kapono added 12 for the UCLA Bruins, whose only lead was 2-0 before Duke responded with 12 straight points.

In the Maryland-Georgetown game, Maryland, after having trouble attacking Georgetown’s zone early in the first half, finished the half with a 7-0 run to take a 38-36 lead at the break and never looked back.

Lonny Baxter had 26 points and 14 rebounds for Maryland.

Georgetown was concerned with foul trouble in the second half, helping Baxter to get inside. Georgetown center Ruben Boumtje fouled out without scoring.

Juan Dixon scored 13 points and Tahj Holden added 10 off the bench for Maryland. Kevin Braswell had 17 points for Georgetown.

In the Philadelphia matchup between the University of Southern California and Kentucky, Cal’s big man was David Bluthenthal. He hit two key three-pointers in the final 6-1/2 minutes and made five of six foul-line tosses in the last half-minute of play.

After falling 21 points behind in the second half, Kentucky began to rally. But Bluthenthal gave the Trojans some breathing room by hitting a three pointer for a 67-60 Cal lead.

Jacob son leads Stanford In Anaheim, Stanford came back from a first-half embarrassment behind All-American Casey Jacobson’s 27 points and solid contributions from twins Jason and Jarron Collins who collected 15 and 14 points respectively.

Ryan Mendez chipped in with 14 of his 16 points in the second half for Stanford.

Cincinnati guard Kenny Satterfield finished with 24 points for the Bearcats, who shot only 33 percent from the field in the second half.NEW YORK, Reuters Duke and Stanford, who have jockeyed for the top spot in the nation’s college rankings this season, advanced in their NCAA regional semifinal games on Thursday.

Stanford, after getting a wake-up call when Cincinnati took the lead at the half, rallied to ease by the Bearcats 78-65 in their West Region game in Anaheim, California.

Duke beat UCLA, 76-63, in an East Region game in Philadelphia, where USC defeated Kentucky, 80-76, for Cal’s first trip to the “Elite Eight” in 47 years.

And in Anaheim, Maryland beat Georgetown, 76-66.

Duke will play USC in the East Region final, and Stanford and Maryland battle in Saturday’s first game with a trip to the Final Four on the line.

In the Duke UCLA matchup, Jason Williams poured in 34 points and Shane Battier added 24 for Duke.

In a six-minute shooting orgy in the second half, Williams hit 19 straight points for Duke.

Battier, the college player of the year, also snatched 11 rebounds for the top seeded Duke.

Duke scored the first seven points of the second half to take a 40-28 lead. UCLA rebounded with a 9-0 effort to get within three points.

But Williams soon ended their dreams of a comeback.

The sophomore point guard hit a three-pointer to begin his scoring binge against UCLA, which played the entire second half with leading scorer Jason Kapono in foul trouble after he picked up his fourth in the final minute of the first half.

After Kapono made the first of two free throws, Williams scored seven straight points on an alley-oop layup, a driving layup and a three-pointers from the right wing that gave Duke a 50-38 advantage with just under 13 left.

Battier stymies UCLA come back bid

For all intents and purposes, Battier ended any chances of a UCLA comeback by completing a three-point play to give the Blue Devils a 68-55 lead with 304 remaining.

Earl Watson scored 17 points and Jason Kapono added 12 for the UCLA Bruins, whose only lead was 2-0 before Duke responded with 12 straight points.

In the Maryland-Georgetown game, Maryland, after having trouble attacking Georgetown’s zone early in the first half, finished the half with a 7-0 run to take a 38-36 lead at the break and never looked back.

Lonny Baxter had 26 points and 14 rebounds for Maryland.

Georgetown was concerned with foul trouble in the second half, helping Baxter to get inside. Georgetown center Ruben Boumtje fouled out without scoring.

Juan Dixon scored 13 points and Tahj Holden added 10 off the bench for Maryland. Kevin Braswell had 17 points for Georgetown.

In the Philadelphia matchup between the University of Southern California and Kentucky, Cal’s big man was David Bluthenthal. He hit two key three-pointers in the final 6-1/2 minutes and made five of six foul-line tosses in the last half-minute of play.

After falling 21 points behind in the second half, Kentucky began to rally. But Bluthenthal gave the Trojans some breathing room by hitting a three pointer for a 67-60 Cal lead.

Jacob son leads Stanford In Anaheim, Stanford came back from a first-half embarrassment behind All-American Casey Jacobson’s 27 points and solid contributions from twins Jason and Jarron Collins who collected 15 and 14 points respectively.

Ryan Mendez chipped in with 14 of his 16 points in the second half for Stanfo