North Texas tops Denver 63-56 in Sun Belt semis
HOT SPRINGS, Ark. (AP) - Tristan Thompson scored 19 points, and North Texas defeated Denver 63-56 in the Sun Belt Conference semifinals Monday night.
George Odufuwa added 16 points and Josh White had 14 for the Mean Green (23-8), who will face top-seeded Troy in the title game Tuesday.
Nate Rohnert led the Pioneers (19-13) with 16 points. Chase Hallam scored 13, and Brian Stafford had 12.
After trailing by eight at halftime, Denver cut the margin to 45-42 with 8:20 left and 46-45 with 6:48 to play. Both times the Pioneers missed shots that would have tied the score or given them the lead.
Denver led 13-6 early but went cold at the 13:41 mark of the first half. The Pioneers did not score for seven minutes as the Mean Green built a 20-16 lead. North Texas was up 31-23 at halftime and never lost the lead.
Troy recovers to defeat Western Kentucky 54-48
HOT SPRINGS, Ark. (AP) - Richard Delk made a 3-pointer from the right wing with 13.2 seconds left, and top-seeded Troy scored the game's final seven points for a 54-48 win over 2-time defending tournament champion Western Kentucky in the Sun Belt Conference semifinals Monday night.
Troy will face North Texas in Tuesday's title game.
The Trojans (20-11) blew a 16-point lead and fell behind 48-47 on a 3-pointer by Western Kentucky's A.J. Slaughter. Delk then scored off an offensive rebound to put Troy back in the lead. With Troy ahead 51-48 and the shot clock running down, Delk faked Western Kentucky's Steffphon Pettigrew in the air, stepped to the left and made his big 3-pointer that put the game away.
Pettigrew led the Hilltoppers (21-13) with 14 points.
Brandon Hazzard scored 17 points for the Trojans, all in the first half.