No. 2 North Carolina (18-2, 7-0) opened up a big lead at Virginia Tech (12-8, 4-3), that the Hokies narrowed at halftime before closing it entirely late. However, Tech couldn't quite close the deal, falling 75-70. The Heels won despite struggling from the field, most seriously from the perimeter, where they hit only three of their 23 attempts. The hosts shot better, but 15 turnovers ended up being fatal.
In Charlottesville, No. 13 Virginia (15-4, 4-3) snapped Syracuse's (13-8, 3-5) three-game run 73-65. Malcolm Brogdon led the Cavaliers with 21, while Malachi Richardson and Michael Gbinije scored 47 of the Orange's 65. Syracuse gets its next four at home, starting with a visit from Notre Dame. It would be a good idea for them to sweep the quartet.
Kris Dunn (13 points, 14 assists) fouled out with :16.9 seconds left in overtime, but not before he helped No. 16 Providence (17-3, 5-2) to its biggest win of the season, 82-76 at No. 4 Villanova (17-3, 7-1). The win snapped the Wildcats' nine-game win streak and 22-game Big East run. The Friars can further boost their position in the Big East race with a win over Xavier on Tuesday. Ben Bentil scored 31 for Providence, while Ryan Arcidiacono scored 19 for the Wildcats, including the three that forced OT.
No. 9 Iowa (16-3, 7-0) completed its second sweep of the Big Ten season, knocking off No. 22 Purdue (17-4, 5-3) for its 13th win in a row, 83-71. The Hawkeyes, who were again led by Jarrod Uthoff (22 points), next play Maryland on Thursday in College Park.
Oregon State (12-6, 3-4) handed No. 21 USC (15-5, 4-3) its second straight road defeat, as the Beavers kept up their dominance over the Trojans in Corvallis 85-70. Andy Enfield's squad actually led by four at the half. Gary Payton II had a monster game for the hosts, who rebounded nicely from a midweek loss to UCLA, with 22 points, 15 rebounds, = eight assists, and four steals.
So, after this week, Oregon and Washington are tied for the conference lead at 5-2, with six teams (Arizona, California, Colorado, Stanford, and USC) a game back and two more (UCLA and Oregon State) two behind.
The nation's lone undefeated squad, tournament ineligible and eighth-ranked SMU (18-1, 7-1) suffered its first defeat of the season 89-80 at the hands of Temple (11-7, 5-2) in Philadelphia. The Owls made 11 more threes than the Ponies, which certainly contributed to the result, but so did 14 Mustang turnovers. Keep an eye on Temple the rest of the way, as they've already swept Cincinnati. The Bearcats (15-6, 5-3) picked apart Tulane (8-13, 1-7) 97-75, thanks to 17 apiece from Shaq Thomas and Gary Clark and 16 from Farad Cobb.
East Carolina (9-11, 1-6) stunned Memphis (12-7, 3-3) 84-83 at FedEx Forum to win its first league game, while UCF (10-7, 4-2) was unable to win its first against a team not named ECU or USF. The Knights were no match for Tulsa (13-6, 5-2), who won 75-60 at home.
St. Bonaventure (12-6, 4-3) gave VCU (15-5, 7-0) a battle in their rescheduled affair in Richmond, but the Rams had just a bit to much, prevailing 84-76. Marcus Posley had a huge night for the Bonnies, scoring 30, but it wasn't enough. JeQuan Lewis led VCU, still unbeaten in the Atlantic 10, with 26. Dayton (16-3, 6-1) remains a game back after topping Fordham (11-7, 2-5) 64-50 at Rose Hill, while Saint Joseph's (16-3, 5-1) remained in the one-loss chase pack with an easy 69-48 win at Big Five rival La Salle (5-12, 1-5).
North Florida (17-6, 6-0) asserted itself as the A-Sun favorite, winning handily at NJIT (11-10, 2-3) 94-80, thanks to a school record 20 three-pointers. Florida Gulf Coast (13-7, 4-1) lost its first conference game, as Lipscomb (6-16, 2-3) shocked them in Nashville 91-75.
Hofstra (14-6, 6-2) used a dominant second half to blast William & Mary (13-6, 5-3) 91-63. However, the Pride lost guard Malik Nicholls to a leg injury with about eight minutes left. The Pride now share the CAA lead with James Madison, who won yesterday, and UNC Wilmington (14-5, 6-2), 77-71 victors at Drexel (3-16, 1-6).
Valparaiso (17-4, 7-1) routed Northern Kentucky (7-12, 3-5) 71-46 to limit the damage from Friday's loss to Wright State. The Raiders (13-8, 7-1) remain tied with the Crusaders for the Horizon lead; however, thanks to their 80-66 home win over UIC (2-17, 0-8).
Monmouth (15-5, 7-2) took out hapless Marist (4-14, 1-8) 83-72, thanks to 28 from the dynamic Justin Robinson. The Hawks are now a half-game up on Saint Peter's for first in the MAAC, thanks to Iona's (10-9, 7-3) 98-91 loss at Fairfield (11-9, 5-5).
Southern Illinois (17-3, 7-1) has sole possession of second in the MVC, thanks to a combination of its 80-65 win at Missouri State (8-12, 4-4) and Evansville's (17-4, 6-2) 82-65 beating at the hands of Indiana State (11-9, 5-3) in Terre Haute.
Mount St. Mary's (9-12, 6-2) won at Fairleigh Dickinson (9-10, 5-3) 87-72 to knock the Knights from the NEC lead pack. A little bit later, Wagner (12-7, 5-3) fell at home to Sacred Heart (5-14, 4-4) 67-58 to give sole possession of first to the Mountaineers.