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Big East Tournament: Villanova captures second title in four years


When Villanova comes up with another big win you just expect Josh Hart to be a big part of it.

"It does still", he said at his locker Friday night.

Josh Hart had 29 points and six rebounds as second-ranked Villanova defeated Creighton 74-60 on Saturday at Madison Square Garden in NY.

"I think we got outplayed tonight".

"It's just sticking together and making sure, 'Hey, let's not panic.' Are we mad that we're down? Great players make great plays", Villanova coach Jay Wright said.

More to the point, of the 29 programs that have played at least six games as a No. 1 seed, Villanova ranks tied-for-last in winning percentage in those games, going 5-3 as a No. 1 seed. In the process, Hart moved into tenth place on the school's all-time scoring list (1,891) and became just the 14th player - and only guard - to collect 800 or more rebounds in his career on the Main Line (804). I think he was kind of surprised he was so open.

"I said, 'I'm right there with you, let's go.' And we came and we got some stops".

"And luckily it bounced in the flawless spot and I was able to just get it and go with up with". When the buzzer sounded and the Wildcats had won, there was senior star Josh Hart consoling Seton Hall's Angel Delgado, who had just missed a potential game-tying layup at the buzzer.

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Delgado fell to the court and remained there face down as his teammates tried to console him. "People can have bad days and miss shots, but we know somebody's there who will carry us", Wagner said. "It's just something that's never happened in my life".

"I got a good look and he was in a flawless position to follow it up", Jenkins said.

After his critical turnover, the four other Wildcats on the floor came over and encouraged Hart as Seton Hall prepared to inbound. And I said, "You have this feeling right now".

Monte Morris scored 17, Deonte Burton and Matt Thomas helped him deal with West Virginia's attacking defense, and No. 23 Iowa State beat the No. 11 Mountaineers 80-74 in Kansas City, Mo., for the Cyclones' third Big 12 title in four years.

"He definitely played with a chip on his shoulder", MI forward Mark Donnal said.

"I'm never going to forget this moment". "Eric Paschall on that last play did a great job on Delgado". "That was a good position to be in, to be able to play in today's game".

Villanova: The Wildcats swept the season series with Creighton, winning by 10 and 16 points.

HARTFORD, Conn. - Sterling Brown scored 22 points and No. 12 SMU beat UCF 70-59 on Saturday in the semifinals of the American Athletic Conference Tournament.

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Donte DiVincenzo (26 Min, 9 Points, 3-5 FG, 2-3 3PFG, 1-3 FT, 5 Rebounds, 1 Assist, 1 Turnover, 2 Steals, 0 Block, 119 ORtg) DiVincenzo scored 7 of the first 14 Wildcat points - helping 'Nova stay in reach of the Pirates at half-time despite the sluggish offense.

When Hart drained a 3-pointer from the top of the key, the Wildcats went ahead 46-26.

Can Hart, Kris Jenkins, and Darryl Reynolds lead the team on another memorable ride, even one that approaches the one shepherded by Arcidiacono and Ochefu? "We know we didn't play Villanova basketball for the first 20 minutes".

What a game. Yes, it's true the power-conference tournaments cannot quite match the drama of their low- and mid-major counterparts, where an entire season's worth of work essentially can be wiped out in a few fateful seconds. He leads the nation in rebounding (13.2), offensive rebounding (4.2) and double-doubles (29).

"There's a great picture in my basement, it's my favorite picture, cutting down the net in Madison Square Garden", Lappas Told the Post by phone.

The Wildcats routed eighth-seeded St. John's 108-67 in the quarterfinals and edged fifth-seeded Seton Hall 55-53 in the semifinal round on Friday before closing out sixth-seeded Creighton for the title. Villanova, which was behind 27-20 after 20 minutes, trailed at the half only three times this season.

Creighton's Justin Patton (23) and Xavier's Malcolm Bernard (11) fight for the ball as Xavier's Sean O'Mara (54) gets caught in the net during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game during the Big East men's tournament Friday, March 10, 2017, in NY.

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