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MARCH MADNESS / NCAA TOURNAMENT | EAST AT GREENSBORO,
N.C.

Missouri Keeps Harrick, Georgia From Getting a Crack at UCLA

March 16, 2001|BILL PLASCHKE | TIMES STAFF WRITER

GREENSBORO, N.C. — Those hoping for the dream--or was it nightmare?--matchup of Jim Harrick versus UCLA will not get their wish after Harrick's Georgia team was beaten on a last-second shot by Missouri's Clarence Gilbert in the Tigers' 70-68 victory Thursday in a first-round East Regional game at Greensboro Coliseum.

In the other evening game, Duke began the NCAA tournament with the look of a top-seeded team by defeating 16th-seeded Monmouth (N.J.), 95-52.

Georgia, seeded eighth, pulled two classic Harrick comebacks during its battle with the ninth-seeded Tigers. The Bulldogs trailed, 15-0, to start the game, and 68-59 with 2:03 remaining.

But they scored nine consecutive points to tie the score with 23 seconds left. This set up a drive by Missouri's Kareem Rush, who, on being double-teamed, flipped the ball out to Gilbert along the baseline. He sank a 16-footer in the final second for the victory.

"A great shot, I think he was even behind the backboard," Harrick said. "It was also great of Rush to get it to the guy."

Said Gilbert, a junior who had been publicly at odds with Coach Quin Snyder earlier in the season: "I'm supposed to make that shot."

The most important part of the earlier game was not Duke's 11-0 run in the first 90 seconds, or the 27-10 run the Blue Devils rolled up later in the half.

The most important part occurred with 14:24 left in the second half and the Blue Devils leading, 75-32. It happened when star guard Jason Williams was knocked over on his sore left ankle . . . and got back up. He left the game immediately but said he was fine.

Williams, who scored a team-high 22 points in 20 minutes and hit six of 10 three-point shots Thursday, injured the ankle Sunday in the ACC tournament championship game against North Carolina.

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