NCAA

No. 20 Wichita State blitzes Bradley 73-39

No. 20 Wichita State blitzes Bradley 73-39

WICHITA, Kan. (AP) Nick Wiggins scored 12 points and fueled a 16-0 run in the second half with three 3-pointers as No. 20 Wichita State completed a regular-season sweep of Bradley with a 73-39 victory Saturday night.

Jake White added 11 points for the Shockers (19-2, 8-1 Missouri Valley Conference), who won their 19th consecutive home game and ensured themselves of starting the second half of their conference schedule in sole possession of the MVC lead.

Cleanthony Early and Malcolm Armstead each added 10 points for Wichita State.

Walt Lemon Jr. led Bradley (12-9, 4-5) with 14 points.

WSU defeated Bradley for the seventh consecutive time, adding to its longest winning streak in series history. The Shockers led 39-30 with 15:20 remaining, but Early and Wiggins launched the game-breaking run as Bradley went more than 6 minutes without a field goal while Wichita State extended its advantage to 59-32.

After a sluggish start, Wichita State shot 51 percent from the field (26 of 51) and limited Bradley to 32 percent.

The Shockers took their first double-digit lead at 34-23 on Tekele Cotton's basket with 19:03 remaining. It took another 5 minutes for Wichita State to begin pulling away.

After Early made two free throws, Wiggins converted Armstead's steal into a fast-break dunk for a 43-30 lead. Wiggins sandwiched two 3-pointers around Anthony's layup, and Carl Hall scored off a Bradley turnover to stretch WSU's lead to 53-32 with 11:29 to play.

Wichita State also finished the first half on a 10-2 run to build a 32-23 lead.

Demetric Williams provided the big spark during WSU's run. He made two free throws with 14 seconds remaining, then stole the ball from Jake Eastman and converted it into a driving layup just before time expired.

The Shockers, who defeated Bradley 69-63 on the road earlier this month, struggled to gain the upper hand for most of the opening half. Neither team led by more than four points in the first 18 minutes. WSU, which made just five of its first 15 shots, reached 50 percent by halftime by making seven of its last nine.

Lemon, Bradley's leading scorer, kept the Braves close in the first half with 10 points, including two 3-pointers. The Braves made just two field goals over the last 8:34 of the first half and were outrebounded 20-12 before the break.

Cavaliers clamp down on Pitt

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Cavaliers clamp down on Pitt

PITTSBURGH -- No. 1 Virginia allowed just seven points in the first half and secured the regular-season Atlantic Coast Conference title outright with a 66-37 win over Pittsburgh on Saturday.

Freshman guard De'Andre Hunter came off the bench to lead the Cavaliers (26-2, 14-1 ACC) with 14 points in a game that didn't take big offensive efforts from Virginia's regulars. Of the five starters, only guard Ty Jerome exceeded his season average with 13 points.

The game was never competitive, as Virginia started on an 8-0 run and Pitt didn't make a field goal until Jared Wilson-Frame hit a 3-pointer at the midway point of the first half.

Virginia coach Tony Bennett rested most of his regulars in the second half. Reserve Nigel Johnson added 12 points on 4-of-6 shooting.

Parker Stewart led Pitt (8-22, 0-17) with 12 points, all on 3-pointers. Pitt had next to no presence inside. The Panthers were outscored 28-8 in the paint and out-rebounded 36-24. Seven of Pitt's 11 made field goals were from beyond the arc.

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3 reasons the Caps beat the Sabres

3 reasons the Caps beat the Sabres

The Caps could not shake Buffalo for two periods, but a dominant finish on Saturday helped them pull away for a 5-1 win. Here's how they finally put away the Sabres.

A quick start

Strong starts go a long way towards helping a team in the middle of a slump. It's a confidence boost for a group in desperate need of one and the Caps got that boost on Saturday from Evgeny Kuznetsov. Kuznetsov used his wheels to zip in behind the defense and score just 50 seconds into the game. Washington led 1-0 at the end of the first, just the second time in 19 games they have held a lead after the opening 20 minutes.

RELATED: SEE THE 3 STARS FROM CAPS-SABRES HERE

Andre Burakovsky snapping a second period slump

It looked in the second period like the Caps were caught trying to protect the lead again, but Andre Burakovsky woke the team back up with his incredible highlight end-to-end goal. It really looked like Buffalo was going to tie the game at one, but instead, Burakovsky extended the lead to two. Going end to end the way he did shows a player who is starting to play with some confidence, something Burakovsky has lacked for much of the season.

Ovechkin's two-goal third period

Buffalo would not go away. Sam Reinhart got the Sabres on the board just 14 seconds into the third period and suddenly the Caps found themselves in a one-goal game again. But Ovechkin ended any hopes for the comeback as he struck in the top corner of the net on the power play from the office. He would later add a deflection goal to extend the lead to 5-1, giving a scuffling Washington team the dominant win they so sorely needed.