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Welcome to Upset City: Morehead State, Gonzaga and Richmond Score Big Wins in Denver

Jessica Benson |
March 18, 2011 | 2:49 a.m. PDT

Staff Writer

Morehead State celebrates a thrilling upset win over Louisville. (Jessica Benson)
Morehead State celebrates a thrilling upset win over Louisville. (Jessica Benson)
DENVER -- Eleven, 12 and 13 seeds reigned in Denver as Gonzaga, Richmond and Morehead State advanced Thursday.

No. 13 Morehead State beats No. 4 Louisville

The main question when entering Denver’s Pepsi Center this morning was, “Where exactly is Morehead State?” But the previously unknown school has become one of the biggest underdogs of the tournament thus far. 

The battle of the Kentucky teams excited fans as chants of “more March Madness” echoed throughout the crowd. 

Louisville was stunned from the start. It took the Cardinals nearly eight minutes to score against the Eagles. When it was all said and done, they failed to cover the lost ground and Morehead State came away with a 62-61 win.

Louisville managed to come back and make the game close in the second half. But a win wasn't in the cards for the Cards. After not scoring the entire second half, Morehead State’s Demonte Harper made an incredible 3-point shot with 4.2 seconds to go. Louisville missed the final shot and the rest was history.

Terrance Hill led the Eagles in scoring with 23 points and went 5-for-6 from the 3-point line. The win marks the school's first tournament victory since 1984.

Morehead State will face the Richmond Spiders on Saturday.

No. 12 Richmond beats No. 5 Vanderbilt

Coming into the tournament, this matchup was highlighted as one of the games to watch, and the Richmond Spiders certainly lived up to that billing. 

Vanderbilt managed an 11-point lead early in the game, but the Spiders refused to back down. Their scrappy but smart style was highly effective against the Commodores.

At 6-foot-11,Vanderbilt center Festus Ezeli should have been able to post up underneath, however Richmond’s defense proved too difficult to manage.  The game came down to the final seconds and a purposely missed free throw by Vanderbilt, but Richmond managed to continue its excellent rebounding, grabbing the game-sealing board and coming away with a 69-66 upset.

Richmond’s Kevin Anderson led the team with 25 points. The Spiders will face fellow upset team Morehead State in what is sure to be a quick, high-energy game on Saturday.

No. 11 Gonzaga beats No. 6 St. John’s

Gonzaga is back. The Zags managed to maintain a double-digit lead over St. John’s throughout the game with the help of Marquise Carter and his career-high 24 points and cruised to a 86-71 win. Teammates Elias Harris and Steven Gray both picked up double digits in scoring as well, helping the Bulldogs' overall game with impressive 3-point shots and work inside the paint. 

What may have been the Bulldogs' greatest asset was their rebounding, though. They outrebounded St. John's 43-20. 

Gonzaga will face Jimmer Fredette and the BYU Cougars on Saturday.  This may be one fast-paced matchup BYU isn’t prepared to handle.

-- Follow along with all of Neon Tommy's NCAA Tournament Coverage.

Tournament Bracket


To reach Jessica Benson, click here.



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