VCU, Zags among 4 to net NCAA berths

col. hoops


Eric Maynor had 25 points and eight assists and is heading back to the NCAA tournament after leading Virginia Commonwealth to a 71-50 victory over George Mason (22-10) in the Colonial Athletic Association championship last night in Richmond, Va. Larry Sanders set title-game records with 20 rebounds and seven blocks for the Rams (24-9).

No. 12 Gonzaga 83, Saint Mary's 58: : Josh Heytvelt scored 17 and the Bulldogs (26-5) romped into their 11th consecutive NCAA tournament by routing the Gaels (25-6) in the West Coast Conference final in Las Vegas. Gonzaga has won 19 of 20.


Siena 77, Niagara 70: : Kenny Hasbrouck shook off a calf injury to score 19 for the Saints (26-7), who beat the Purple Eagles (26-8) in Albany, N.Y., to defend their Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference tournament title and again qualify for the NCAAs.

Chattanooga 80, College of Charleston 69: : Keyron Sheard scored 18, and the host Mocs (18-16) beat the Cougars (26-8) to win the Southern Conference tournament and earn their 10th NCAA tournament bid.

Women's results:: Angel McCoughtry (St. Frances) had 31 points and 14 rebounds as No. 5 Louisville beat No. 14 Pittsburgh, 69-63, in the semifinals of the Big East tournament in Hartford, Conn. ... Charlotte (Atlantic 10), Western Carolina (Southern) and Gonzaga (West Coast) earned automatic NCAA bids by winning their conference championships.

All-ACC men's team: : North Carolina's Tyler Hansbrough became the first player in league history to be unanimously selected four times to the All-Atlantic Coast Conference team. Hansbrough last year joined North Carolina State's David Thompson (1973-75) and Duke's Art Heyman (1961-63) as the only players to be unanimously named to the All-ACC team three times. The reigning National Player of the Year, Hansbrough leads the league in scoring this season (21.1 ppg).


First team: Hansbrough, North Carolina; Ty Lawson, North Carolina; Toney Douglas, Florida State; Gerald Henderson, Duke; Jack McClinton, Miami

Second team: Greivis Vasquez, Maryland; Jeff Teague, Wake Forest; Trevor Booker, Clemson; Tyrese Rice, Boston College; Kyle Singler, Duke

Polls: : North Carolina edged Pittsburgh for No. 1 in the Associated Press men's poll in one of the closest votes ever. North Carolina (27-3) received 35 first-place votes and 1,734 points from a national media panel. Pittsburgh (28-3) was No. 1 on 33 ballots and had 1,731 points. ... The Maryland women (28-4), who won the ACC tournament Sunday, held at No. 4 in the AP rankings. The Connecticut women, who beat Villanova, 72-42, in the Big East semifinals yesterday in Hartford to improve to 32-0, remained an unanimous No. 1 for the 15th week in a row.


Wizards defeat T'wolves, 110-99


Caron Butler had 27 points, 10 rebounds and six assists to lead the visiting Washington Wizards to a 110-99 win over the Minnesota Timberwolves (18-45) in a matchup of teams that had lost 14 straight combined. Antawn Jamison added 26 points for the Wizards (15-49), who had lost five in a row.

Heat 130, Bulls 127, 2OT: : Dwyane Wade stole the ball from John Salmons with four seconds left and made a running three-pointer as time expired to lift Miami (34-29) to a double-overtime win over visiting Chicago (29-35). Wade had 48 points and 12 assists.

Other results: : Richard Hamilton scored 29 points and had a career-high 14 assists as the host Pistons (32-30) beat the Magic (46-17), 98-94. ... Joe Johnson scored 30 and the host Hawks (36-28) defeated the Hornets (39-23), 89-79, to end their season-best seven-game winning streak. ... Ron Artest scored 22 to lead the visiting Rockets (42-23) over the Nuggets (40-25), 97-95.

A-Rod's hip surgery goes as planned


et cetera

Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez underwent arthroscopic surgery to repair torn cartilage in his right hip, and doctors said they found nothing that would keep him from returning to the lineup in May.

NFL: : Three-time Pro Bowl left tackle Tra Thomas signed a three-year deal with the Jacksonville Jaguars. ... Authorities in Tampa, Fla., say the girlfriend of Tampa Bay Buccaneers linebacker Geno Hayes stabbed him in the head and in the neck Saturday. He was treated and released.

NHL: : Guy Carbonneau was fired as coach of the Montreal Canadiens (35-24-7). General manager Bob Gainey takes over as coach.


These teams have earned automatic bids to the NCAA men's tournament by winning their conference tournaments:


* Chattanooga, Southern

* Cornell, Ivy League

* East Tennessee State, Atlantic Sun

* Gonzaga, West Coast

* Morehead State, Ohio Valley

* Northern Iowa, Missouri Valley


* Radford, Big South

* Siena, Metro Atlantic Athletic

* VCU, Colonial Athletic Association