Steve Alford and UCLA fought off Central Arkansas in overtime Thursday. Photo by John Sommers II/UPI | License Photo
LOS ANGELES -- A Wednesday that began with negative headlines for No. 23 UCLA nearly ended with another, but the Bruins rallied in overtime to beat upset-minded Central Arkansas 106-101 at Pauley Pavilion.
UCLA preceded its 2017-18 home opener as the focus of national attention, with freshmen LiAngelo Ball, Cody Riley and Jalen Hill issuing a public apology for their arrest last week in China on shoplifting. They were later suspended indefinitely.
The Bears' Jordan Howard sank his fifth shot from behind the arc with 3.7 seconds remaining in regulation, giving Central Arkansas an 86-85 lead. Howard finished with 35 points and was 8 for 15 from 3-point range.
Bruins freshman Jaylen Hands, fouled on a drive into the lane, made 1 of 2 free throws on the Bruins' final possession, forcing overtime.
No. 9 North Carolina 93, Bucknell 81
CHAPEL HILL, N.C. -- Luke Maye scored 20 points as North Carolina withstood a second-half threat from Bucknell before pulling away.
The game marked the first action of the season for Tar Heels guard Joel Berry, who was out with a broken bone in his right hand after slamming it against a door following a video game with a teammate and team manager last month.
Roy Williams won his 400th game as North Carolina coach. He is 400-115 in 15 seasons, including 200-27 in the Smith Center.
Theo Pinson racked up 19 points and Sterling Manley provided 16 points and 13 rebounds for the Tar Heels.
No. 14 Minnesota 107, Niagara 81
MINNEAPOLIS -- Amir Coffey scored 18 points to lead all five starters in double figures as Minnesota defeated Niagara.
Reggie Lynch supplied 18 points, 13 rebounds and also blocked nine shots for the Golden Gophers. Nate Mason also stuffed the stat sheet with 15 points, 11 assists and six rebounds for Minnesota.
The Purple Eagles received 26 points from Kahlil Dukes, who sank 5 of 10 3-point attempts. Matt Scott had 17 points and 11 rebounds, and Marvin Prochet added 10 points and 12 boards for Niagara.
Creighton 92, No. 20 Northwestern 88
ROSEMONT, Ill. -- Khyri Thomas scored 24 points, including 15 in the second half, and grabbed a game-high 11 rebounds to help Creighton defeat Northwestern in the Gavitt Tipoff Games.
The Wildcats' Vic Law led all scorers with 30 points, shooting 5 of 10 from 3-point range, and Bryant McIntosh added 24 in a back-and-forth shootout that came down to the wire.
Scottie Lindsey entered the game as Northwestern's leading scorer at 19 points per game, but was limited to five points in 10 minutes in the first half after picking up his third foul with 6:14 remaining. He finished with 10 points on 3-of-8 shooting.
No. 21 Saint Mary's 76, Cal State Fullerton 57
MORAGA, Calif. -- Calvin Hermanson scored 22 points as Saint Mary's prevailed despite allowing Cal State Fullerton to shoot 67 percent in the first half.
The Titans trailed 39-31 at halftime, then shot 31 percent over the final 20 minutes. They contributed to their own demise with 21 turnovers, leading to 31 Gaels' points.
Emmett Naar added 11 points and nine assists for Saint Mary's. Kyle Allman and Jackson Rowe led Fullerton with 13 points apiece.
No. 22 Seton Hall 84, Indiana 68
NEWARK, N.J. -- Desi Rodriguez poured in 23 points to lead Seton Hall over Indiana.
The Pirates' Angel Delgado had 19 points and 11 rebounds for the 53rd career double-double and third this season. Khadeen Carrington added 17 points and five assists for Seton Hall.
Devonte Green led the Hoosiers with 16 points, Robert Johnson scored 12 points and Aljami Durham and Justin Smith chipped in with 10 each. The Pirates have not allowed an opposing player to score 20 points in their first three games.
No. 24. West Virginia 98, American 64
MORGANTOWN, W.Va. -- Jevon Carter delivered 20 points, nine steals, seven rebounds and seven assists as West Virginia overwhelmed American.
Daxter Miles also scored 20 and Beetle Bolden had 16 for the Mountaineers, who were returning to action after last week's 23-point loss to Texas A&M in Germany. Teddy Allen scored 14 points and Lamont West finished with 12 for West Virginia.
Sa'eed Nelson scored 17 and Larry Motuzis had 15 points for the Eagles, who haven't beaten a ranked team since Dec. 15, 1982, when they upset No. 5 Georgetown 62-61.