Indiana 73, Oklahoma 64
Mar. 31, 2002
%mlink(STRY:; PHOTO:AXD130-033002; AUDIO:%)
ATLANTA (AP) _ Hoosiers: The Sequel.
Indiana, the most unlikely team in the Final Four, is one victory from its first national championship since 1987, using an amazing display of versatility to upset Oklahoma 73-64 Saturday night.
Fifteen years to the day that Keith Smart hit a baseline jumper to beat Syracuse in the title game, Indiana stunned the Sooners with a gimpy point guard, continually cutting through Oklahoma's vaunted defense.
Six-foot-10 Jared Jeffries led the fast break. Backup forward Jeff Newton swatted away shots and kept getting inside. Even freshman Donald Perry, filling in briefly for the hobbled Tom Coverdale, came through with a key basket on an end-to-end drive with just over two minutes left.
Second-seeded Oklahoma couldn't overcome the loss of Aaron McGhee, who scored 22 points but fouled out with 4:40 remaining.
Hollis Price, the Sooners' point guard, had a horrible night. He made just 1-of-11 shots and was held to six points.
Indiana's last championship came with Bob Knight on the sideline. This time, it was second-year coach Mike Davis, who took over a program in turmoil, leading the way to the title game.
The Hoosiers already upset defending national champion Duke in the regional semifinals. Now, anything seems possible _ even with a pair of No. 1 seeds, Maryland and Kansas, set to meet in the other semifinal.