Freshman Sirvaliant Brown had a key block and scored the final four points of the game, leading George Washington to an 80-74 victory over Indiana State tonight in the first round of the Top of the World Classic.
The Colonials scored the final eight points, with Brown and Mike King each hitting two free throws in the final 33.7 seconds. Indiana State turned over the ball on its final two possessions.
After blocking a shot by Brian Giesen with two seconds remaining and knocking the ball out of bounds off Giesen's knee, Brown scored on a breakaway layup at the buzzer to close out the win.
George Washington never trailed in the first half and forced 18 turnovers in the opening 20 minutes. The Colonials had nine steals, but the Sycamores stayed in the game by converting 59 percent of their shots. Brown (Lee High School) led the Colonials with 19 points. The Colonials will play either Oklahoma or Montana State today.
* SAMFORD 68, ST. JOHN'S 60: Samford surprised No. 15 St. John's as Will Daniel scored 17 points and led a second-half surge in the opening round of the CoSIDA Classic in Albuquerque. Samford will play Dayton, a 70-57 winner over New Mexico, in today's championship. "We made a lot of bad decisions and took a lot of bad shots and we paid the price," St. John's Coach Mike Jarvis said.
* KENTUCKY 56, UTAH 48: In Lexington, Ky., Saul Smith and Desmond Allison made clutch jump shots in the final two minutes as No. 14 Kentucky held off No. 16 Utah and advanced to the Preseason NIT semifinals. The win sends the Wildcats to Madison Square Garden, where they will play Maryland, a 78-70 winner over Tulane.
* TOLEDO 82, GEORGE MASON 74: Greg Stempin scored 22 points and had 12 rebounds for Toledo as the Rockets defeated visiting George Mason in the season opener for both teams. Stempin was one of five players in double figures for the Rockets. George Evans led the Patriots with 38 points and 12 rebounds.
* VIRGINIA 97, ELON 66: Donald Hand scored 18 points and Chris Williams added 16 points and nine rebounds as host Virginia opened its season with a win. Freshman Travis Watson added 15 points and 14 rebounds for the Cavaliers (1-0), with classmates Roger Mason and Majestic Mapp scoring 10 points apiece.
* RICE 70, NAVY 64: Shawn Tyndell, who had only three points in regulation play, scored eight in overtime to lead Rice in Houston. Erik Cooper led Rice (1-0) with a game-high 19 points while Alex Bougaieff added 14 and a game-high nine rebounds. Substitute John Williams led Navy (0-1) with 17 points and Chris Williams (no relation) chipped in 14.
* FLORIDA 96, FLORIDA ST. 61: Running and trapping in midseason form, No. 7 Florida opened its schedule by forcing 29 turnovers in the home win.
* CONNECTICUT 89, VERMONT 52: Khalid El-Amin scored 28 points as No. 8 Connecticut routed visiting Vermont in the first meeting between the schools in 19 years.
* ILLINOIS 76, WESTERN ILLINOIS 53: Frank Williams sparked host Illinois with a pair of three-pointers early in the second half and the 17th-ranked Illini used a 32-4 run to rout Western Illinois in the opener for both teams.
* KANSAS 97, FAIRFIELD 71: Kenny Gregory scored 19 points as No. 11 Kansas launched its season with a win at Allen Fieldhouse.
* OKLAHOMA ST. 87, APPALACHIAN ST. 75: Joe Adkins had 18 points and No. 23 Oklahoma State started the second half with a 14-2 run on its way to a season-opening victory at home in the America's Youth Classic. In the first game, Idaho beat Oral Roberts, 71-70, in overtime.
* ARIZONA 84, NEW MEXICO ST. 60: Michael Wright dominated play inside with a career-high 24 points, 13 rebounds as 10th-ranked Arizona beat New Mexico State in Tucson to advance to the semifinals of the Preseason NIT. The Wildcats (2-0) will play Notre Dame Wednesday night in New York.
* AUBURN 65, UAB 59: Mamadou N'diaye had 11 points and a career-high 14 rebounds to lead third-ranked Auburn at home in a sloppy season opener.