NORMAN — Associated Press
SALT LAKE CITY — Wesley Saunders scored 18 points and Laurent Rivard had 17 to help 14th-seeded Harvard pull off Thursday’s biggest upset in the NCAA tournament, a 68-62 win over No. 3 New Mexico in the West regional.
The Ivy League advanced for the first time in the tournament since a very good Cornell team made the regional semifinals in 2010. It also was Harvard’s first NCAA tourney win.
The Mountain West Conference, judged one of the top two leagues in college basketball all season, fell to 1-3 so far this week.
Harvard (20-9) tries to keep it going Saturday against sixth-seeded Arizona.
New Mexico closes the season at 29-6. Alex Kirk had 22 points for the Lobos, a popular pick to make the Final Four who, instead, still haven’t made it out of the first weekend since 1974.
Syracuse 81, Montana 34: Brandon Triche scored 20 points, C.J. Fair added 13 and fourth-seeded Syracuse shut down No. 13 seed Montana with its zone defense in a 81-34 victory in the second round of the NCAA tournament on Thursday night.
Michael Carter-Williams chipped in four points, eight rebounds and nine assists as the Orange (27-9) raced out to an early lead that grew as big as 50 points and coasted past the Grizzlies (25-7) to their most lopsided tournament win since beating Brown 101-52 in the first round in 1986.
Syracuse advanced to play 12th-seeded and local favorite California (21-11) on Saturday for a spot in the East regional in Washington, D.C. next week. The Golden Bears beat UNLV 64-61.
Colorado State 84, Missouri 72: Dorian Green scored 17 of his 26 points in the first half and eighth-seeded Colorado State used good shooting to run away from No. 9 Missouri 84-72 Thursday night in the NCAA tournament.
Green, who went scoreless with five turnovers in last year’s second-round upset to Murray State, did much better this time as the Rams shot nearly 58 percent in the first half.