The Wildcats (12-15), who will meet top seed Coppin State in tonight's semifinals, came back from a 49-41 deficit six minutes into the second half by staging a 15-7 run to tie the game at 56 with 6:52 remaining. Bethune-Cookman then slowly put the game away with free throws.
Bethune-Cookman made 27 of 31 free throws overall, and converted 21 of its last 22 chances.
UMES (13-14) was led by guard Aaron McKinney, who scored a game-high 35 points, including 23 of the Hawks' 33 first-half points.
* North Carolina A&T; 69, Howard 66: Phillip Allen scored a game-high 23 points, including two free throws with six seconds left in overtime to lead the third seed Aggies over the sixth seed Bison in a quarterfinal game.