Ashland’s run comes to an end
ASHLAND — Harding (Ark.) scored on its first three possessions to end Ashland’s season in the second round of the NCAA Division II playoffs, 34-24, Saturday in front of 1,557 at Jack Miller Stadium.
The ninth-ranked Eagles finish the 2017 season at 11-2, tying the school record for wins in a campaign and most consecutive victories in one season.
“It’s hard for our guys to put this whole thing into perspective,” Ashland coach Lee Owens said. “But they’ve been here four years, and there’s only twice they’ve walked off this field not being able to ring the victory bell. Today wasn’t our day.”
Harding freshman Cole Chancey ran for 165 yards and four touchdowns on 29 carries.
The Bison had 421 yards of total offense, including 295 yards on the ground.
Ashland’s senior class — which includes defensive linemen Harrison Hoppel from Minerva and Mike Buzzard from Columbiana — finishes its career with a school-record 38 wins over a four-year period.
Hoppel, a starting defensive tackle, recorded eight tackles, including three solos and 2 1/2 for losses.
He forced Chancey to fumble and recovered it at the Harding 33 with 7:12 to play. That set up a field goal as the Eagles closed within 31-24 with 5:23 remaining.
Senior quarterback Travis Tarnowski was 26-for-47 passing for 288 yards and two touchdowns.
Harding (10-3) will play Ferris State (11-1) in the quarterfinals next Saturday.
W&J season comes to an end
WASHINGTON, Pa. — Frostburg State took advantage of four Washington & Jefferson turnovers on the way to a 46-23 win in the second round of the NCAA Division III playoffs Saturday in front of 2,103 fans at Cameron Stadium.
The 10th-ranked Presidents ended the season at 11-1, the sixth time the program has reached the 11-win mark. They trailed 24-17 with less than nine minutes to play in third quarter.
Washington & Jefferson’s starting right tackle is sophomore Keaton Turney, a Salem High School graduate.
The 17th-ranked Bobcats (11-1) advance to play Mount Union next Saturday.
Bama ends game with 3 players
NEW YORK (AP) — Nate Mason scored 20 points to lead No. 14 Minnesota to an 89-84 victory over No. 25 Alabama, which finished the game with just three players, in the championship game of the Barclays Center Classic on Saturday.
Jordan Murphy scored 19 points and and grabbed 14 rebounds for Minnesota (7-0) while Isaiah Washington added 14 and Amir Coffey finished with 12.
Collin Sexton had 40 points for the Crimson Tide while Riley Norris had 13 and Galin Smith added 10.
Only the third ever matchup between the Southeastern Conference and Big 10 programs was marred by a near brawl involving Minnesota’s Dupree McBrayer and Alabama’s Dazon Ingram in front of the Crimson Tide bench 6:21 into the second half. Just 27 seconds earlier, Minnesota’s Nate Mason and Sexton were each assessed technical fouls for talking to each other, and the Golden Gophers senior guard was ejected.
During the fracas, Alabama players Donta Hall, Alex Reese, Daniel Giddens, Avery Johnson Jr. and Herbert Jones came off the bench and were ejected. Ingram, who had four fouls at the time of the scuffle, fouled out.
Nearly 3 minutes after the McBrayer-Ingram incident, Alabama lost John Petty to a leg injury, and the Crimson Tide ended the game playing just three players.
Leading by 14 with 10:17 left, the Golden Gophers saw their lead trimmed to 83-80 on Sexton’s layup. Alabama had a chance to cut the deficit to one — or tie — after Sexton grabbed a rebound of a miss by Coffey, but he missed a mid-range right side jumper.
Coffey responded with a layup and foul to push the lead to 86-80, only to see Smith’s dunk bring the Crimson Tide within four. McBrayer knocked down two free throws with 18 seconds remaining and Michael Hurt’s free throw increased Minnesota’s lead to 89-83, before Sexton made two free throws with 1 second remaining.
ALABAMA: Following Friday’s 72-59 win over BYU, coach Avery Johnson said his team wasn’t ready to take the next step. And what transpired on the Barclays Center court may have proved him right. Alabama played much of the second half without a bench due to five players being ejected, another fouling out and another being injured.
MINNESOTA: The Golden Gophers looked ready for Big 10 play. Minnesota grabbed 40 rebounds — 17 offensive — while blocking six shots and forcing 13 turnovers.
ALABAMA: It could be argued the championship game of the Barclays Center Classic was Sexton’s national coming out party. He entered the game leading the Crimson Tide in points (21.5 per game) and assists (4.3).
MINNESOTA: The Golden Gophers improved to 1-2 all-time against Alabama.
ALABAMA: Hosts Louisiana Tech on Wednesday night.
MINNESOTA: Hosts No. 11 Miami on Wednesday night.
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Copyright 2017 The Associated Press.