(Sporting Alert) — No. 1 seed Southern Mississippi avoided any upset to advance to the NIT Tournament quarterfinals after beating Louisiana Tech 63-52 on Monday night.
Dwayne Davis scored 13 points, seven rebounds and three assists, and Jerrold Brooks added 13 points for the Golden Eagles (27-9), which led 35-27 at half-time.
Jonathan Mills and Rashard McGill both chipped in with a productive 10 points and eight rebounds in the win for Southern Miss, which advanced to host No. 3 seed Brigham Young on Wednesday night.
“We started the game the right way and we had a great energy level,” said Southern Miss head coach Donnie Tyndall.
“We forced a few shots early, but for the most part we took care of the ball and fed the post.
“We didn’t settle for contested shots.”
Raheem Appleby had 17 points and six boards to lead Louisiana Tech (27-7). Alex Hamilton added 15 points in the defeat for the Bulldogs, which struggled with just 18-percent from 3-point range.
“We really struggled against their unique zone defense and turned the ball over 18 times,” Louisiana Tech coach Michael White said.
“That just didn’t give us a very good chance.”
Elsewhere in the NIT Tournament on Monday night, No. 3 BYU (23-11) eased past Mercer 90-71 with forward Brandon Davies leading the way with a double-double of 26 points and 10 rebounds.
He got lots of support from his Cougars teammates Brandon Davies, who had 24 points and Matt Carlino, who finished with 18 points, nine assists and six rebounds.
Travis Smith had 19 points, while Langston Hall scored 15 in the defeat for the Bears (24-12).
In the night’s other game, Robert Morris (24-11), after beating NCAA defending national champions Kentucky, were not able to add another NIT win as they fell 77-68 to No. 4 seed Providence (19-14).
LaDontae Henton scored 21 points and Bryce Cotton added 20 for the Friars in the victory.
Karvel Anderson scored 18 points to paced Robert Morris with Russell Johnson finishing with 16 points and five steals in the defeat.
“I don’t think we were detailed enough to come into a building like this and beat a Big East team,” Colonials coach Andrew Toole said.
“But I don’t think we were as bad we were in the final 3:45.”
March 25: NIT Tournament Results and Score Box
(4) Providence 77, (8) Robert Morris 68 Box Score
(3) Brigham Young 90, (7) Mercer 71 Box Score
(1) Southern Miss 63, (5) Louisiana Tech 52 Box Score