UTEP 98, Arizona 91 (OT)
TUCSON, Ariz. (AP) _ Senior guard Hernell Jackson scored nine of his 23 points in overtime and keyed a pivotal 9-2 run as Texas-El Paso defeated Arizona 98-91 in a first- round West Regional basketball game Friday.
The Miners, 25-6, now advance to Sunday’s second round to face sixth-ranked Iowa, 28-4, which beat Santa Clara 99-76 in another first-round game earlier Friday at McKale Center here.
UTEP, the Western Athletic Conference regular-season champion, trailed 78-73 with 50 seconds left in regulation but forced the overtime at 79-79 on Jackson’s 3-point goal with 26 seconds left and junior guard Chris Blocker’s jumper with one second showing.
Arizona led 85-83 with 3:05 remaining in overtime on a jumper by sophomore forward Sean Elliott.
The Miners, with three starters having fouled out in regulation, used a 9-2 run for a 92-87 lead.
Jackson accounted for seven of the points on a 3-point goal with 2:15 left, a midcourt steal and stuff with 2:05 to go and two free throws with 45 seconds showing.
A layin by sophomore forward Anthony Cook brought the Wildcats to within 92-89 with 40 seconds left, but UTEP made six foul shots down the stretch to eliminate their former WAC rivals from the tournament.
Arizona, the 1985-86 Pacific-10 Conference champion and second-place finisher in the league standings this season, ended its year with an 18-12 record.
Elliott had 26 points, 17 coming in the second half. Junior guard Craig McMillan and junior center Tom Tolbert both added 15 the Wildcats while Cook had 13.
Senior forward Quintan Gates led the Miners with 26 points - 20 coming in the first half to give them a 41-39 lead.
Senior center Mike Richmond added 18 points for UTEP with Blocker scoring 12.