Conference championships: Drake topples Indiana St. in MVC final


Tucker DeVries racked up 27 points, seven rebounds and five assists to propel second-seeded Drake past top-seeded Indiana State 84-80 in the final of the Missouri Valley Conference tournament on Sunday in St. Louis.

Drake (28-6) won the league for the second straight year and will make its third NCAA Tournament appearance in four seasons. Indiana State (28-6), briefly ranked in the AP Top 25 poll this season, could earn an at-large bid but will have to wait for Selection Sunday to learn its fate.

Drake led 45-32 at halftime and 67-49 with 10 minutes to go before the Sycamores stormed back. Isaiah Swope scored 10 straight Indiana State points and then converted a four-point play at the 4:08 mark to push his team ahead 73-72.

The teams traded leads until DeVries, Conor Enright and Darnell Brodie scored seven straight for the Bulldogs to take an 81-76 lead with 1:17 to go.

Brodie and Atin Wright finished with 17 points apiece. All five Indiana State starters scored in double figures, led by Jayson Kent (22 points, nine rebounds) and Swope (19 points).

Stetson 94, Austin Peay 91

Jalen Blackmon netted a career-high 43 points to guide the host Hatters over the Governors in the ASUN championship game in DeLand, Fla.

No. 2 seed Stetson (22-12) will go to the NCAA Tournament for the first time at the Division I level. The Hatters trailed the fourth-seeded Governors by three at halftime before outscoring them 58-52 in a high-octane second half. Blackmon shot 12-for-22 from the field, 5-for-9 from the 3-point arc and 14-of-17 from the foul line.

Sai Witt’s 28 points and 10 rebounds weren’t enough for Austin Peay (19-15). Dezi Jones added 17 points, 11 assists and seven rebounds for the Governors.

Longwood 85, UNC Asheville 59

Michael Christmas had 18 points, Walyn Napper combined 10 points with 11 assists and the fifth-seeded Lancers defeated the second-seeded Bulldogs in the Big South final in High Point, N.C.

Christmas led five players in double figures for Longwood (21-13), which outshot UNC Asheville a whopping 59.6 percent to 38.2 percent from the field. The Virginia school will play in the NCAA Tournament for the second time in three years.

Drew Pember had 14 points and six rebounds to pace UNC Asheville (22-12), which fell behind 42-24 at halftime and never recovered.