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Conference tournament wrap: 3/5/09

Form is holding with rare exception early on this postseason, exemplified by the Big South where the top seeds have prevailed in each game, setting up a 1/2 Saturday title tilt.

Here's what went down on Thursday.

Game of the Night

3) Belmont 65, 6) Mercer 64 (Atlantic Sun)

The first afternoon game of the postseason provided the first buzzer-beater.

Mick Hedgepeth's putback of an Andy Wicke miss with two-tenths of a second to play gave third-seeded Belmont a 65-64 victory over Mercer in the A-Sun quarters.

The basket was Hedgepath's only one in the second half.

The Bruins have won this tournament in each of the past three seasons.


Upset of the Night

5) Quinnipiac 86, 4) Long Island 78 (OT) (Northeast)

Just two upsets on Thursday and the other was an eight over a nine, so we'll go with the game that went to overtime.

Long Island's Julian Boyd tied the game at 73 with a buzzer-beating three-pointer at the end of regulation, but the Blackbirds could muster just three points in overtime.

James Feldeine led Quinnipiac with 22 points, while Justin Rutty added 18 points and 16 rebounds.

The Bobcats face top-seeded Robert Morris in the NEC semis.

Player of the Night

Kenny Thomas (Radford/Big South)

Thomas made five 3-pointers and finished with a career-high 35 points for top-seeded Radford, which advanced to Saturday's Big South championship game by knocking off UNC-Asheville.

Honor Roll

Jonathan Cox (Drake/Missouri Valley)

Scored a game-high 27 points as the defending MVC champs were bounced in the first round by Indiana State.

Justin Rutty (Quinnipiac/Northeast)

Notched a double-double with 18 points and 16 rebounds in the Bobcats' overtime victory over Long Island.

James Florence (Mercer/Atlantic Sun)

Scored 24 points and hit what would have been the game-winning shot with 9.8 seconds left had Mick Hedgepeth's putback not beaten the buzzer.

Full Results

Big South (Semifinals)

1) Radford 94, 4) North Carolina-Asheville 86
2) VMI 78, 3) Liberty 58

Atlantic Sun (Quarterfinals)

3) Belmont 65, 6) Mercer 64
4) Lipscomb 82, 5) Campbell 52

Missouri Valley (First Round)

7) Wichita State 59, 10) Missouri State 46
9) Indiana State 62, 8) Drake 55

Northeast (Quarterfinals)

1) Robert Morris 73, 8) St. Francis 60
2) Mount St. Mary's 72, 7) Wagner 62
3) Sacred Heart 76, 6) Central Connecticut State 64
5) Quinnipiac 67, 4) Long Island 78 (OT)