DURHAM, N.C. -- Raasean Davis scored 21 points and North Carolina Central, long eliminated from the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference regular season title chase, made sure the same is true for its arch-rival, North Carolina A&T, knocking the Aggies out of a five-way tie for the title, 70-59, in the regular season finale Thursday night.
North Carolina A&T entered the game tied for first with Bethune-Cookman, Hampton, Savannah State and Norfolk State. Bethune-Cookman and Savannah State each won its finale and Hampton knocked Norfolk State out of the mix, 74-71, leaving a three-way tie for the conference title.
The Eagles (15-15, 9-7) trailed by a point at the half, 27-26 and the Aggies pushed that lead to five to start the second half, but John Guerra hit a 3 and Davis had back-to-back dunks to spark an 18-2 run to go up by 11, 44-33 with 12:39 remaining.
The Aggies (18-13, 11-5) got within six points, 62-56 on Denzel Keyes 3 with 1:14 left, but NC Central answered with five-straight free throws, and after Kwei Lartey turned a three-point play with :20 left to make it 67-59, Davis dunked and Larry McKnight hit the first of two free throws to push the lead back to 11 points.
Jim Calhoun, who has a career record of 873-380 and led UConn to three national titles before retiring in 2012, has been hired as coach at Saint Joseph.
Pac-12 commissioner Larry Scott believes a tentative ruling making show-cause orders illegal in California would threaten NCAA membership for state schools.
Guard James Bouknight, ranked 87th in the ESPN 100, is the first player from the Class of 2019 to commit to UConn and first-year coach Dan Hurley.
|North Carolina A&T||11-5||1||20-15|
|North Carolina Central||9-7||3||19-16|
|South Carolina St||6-10||6||10-22|