Braden Johnson made four 3-pointers while scoring 16 points as Montana State upset top-seeded Weber State 70-61 in the Big Sky Conference tournament semifinals Tuesday night in Ogden, Utah.
The Bobcats (14-16) were the only conference team to beat Weber State (21-9) during the regular season and did it again on the Wildcats’ home court to advance to the Big Sky championship game for the first time since 1999.
Montana State plays defending champion Portland State tonight for the conference’s automatic NCAA tournament berth.
Portland State 61, Idaho State 53: Andre Murray scored 21 points and Portland State survived a shaky second half and held off Idaho State 61-53 in the other Big Sky Conference tournament semifinal in Ogden.
Phil Nelson scored 14 for the Vikings (22-9), who shot just 5 for 23 in the second half and nearly blew a 21-point lead.
Idaho State (13-19) opened the second half on an 18-3 run, holding the Vikings scoreless for nearly nine minutes, but could not get any closer than three points.
Horizon League championship
Cedric Jackson scored 19 points and Cleveland State used a flurry of 3-pointers to beat No. 16 Butler 57-54 in Indianapolis, winning the Horizon League tourney championship and its first NCAA tournament berth since 1986.
Six of Cleveland State’s first seven field goals in the second half were 3-pointers, helping the Vikings (25-10) erase an eight-point lead by the Bulldogs (26-5).
Summit League championship
Ben Woodside made a 17-foot jumper with 3 seconds left to give North Dakota State a 66-64 win against Oakland University in Sioux Falls, S.D., for the Summit League championship and a berth in the NCAA tournament.
No. 1 seed NDSU (26-6) trailed much of the game and needed a rally in the final five minutes to earn an NCAA bid in its first year of Division I eligibility.
Erik Kangas and Will Hudson each had 16 points for No. 3 seed Oakland (22-12).
Sun Belt championship
A.J. Slaughter scored 18 points, and Western Kentucky beat South Alabama 64-56 to win the Sun Belt tournament in Hot Springs, Ark.
The Hilltoppers (24-8) wasted a 15-point first-half lead and trailed 43-39 in the second. Slaughter put Western Kentucky back ahead 44-43 with a 3-pointer, part of a decisive 14-3 run that assured the Hilltoppers their 21st NCAA tournament berth.
DeAndre’ Coleman led the Jaguars (20-13) with 27 points.
Dwight O’Neil hit a go-ahead jumper with 21.7 seconds left and Fresno State (13-20) held on for a 62-58 win over Hawaii (13-17) in the first game of the Western Athletic Conference tournament in Reno, Nev.
Fresno State advanced to play No. 1 seed Utah State in the quarterfinals Thursday, also at Reno.
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