The Palm Beach Post from West Palm Beach, Florida on March 29, 1998 · Page 47
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March 29, 1998

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The Palm Beach Post from West Palm Beach, Florida · Page 47

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- 8C THE PALM BEACH POST SUNDAY, MARCH 29, 1998 C NCAA Final Fours ffamollugiiiT odd mm P I in inn i ii I i Cheryl Rosenberg , . S-V-SLI : - J. Facts and figures ; Men National : championship WHO: Kentucky (34-4) vs. Utah M30-3), 9:18 p.m. ' WHEN: Monday, 9.18 p.m. I WHERE: Alamodome, San Anto-J nio, Texas. TV: WPEC-12, WFOR-4. Final Four Kentucky 86 Stanford (OT) 85 Pursuit of women stars ' x . .... . is escalating KANSAS CITY, Mo. Tracy Reid told all those agents not to ? lrt Vtrt until iffrrt ll ,1 pnnfMi UU11IC1 UCI until aiLCl uit ataauji. CVia ii.oo fnnnn n Var liar MrtVi I FG FT R STANFORD Min M-A M-A O-T 1-7 0-0 Sauer Carolina Tar Heels get to the c I: 4-5 4-5 Final Four, and she didn't need I any distractions. She was in tears after her ( 1- 1 0-0 2- 3 -9 2-2 04 5-7 0- 0 1- 2 , Madsen 34 Young M Weems 41 Lee 41 Mosely 15 ' Mendel II Jar. Collins 20 McDonald 4 Van Elsoyk 3 5- 11 6- 23 4-12 0- 3 1- 4 1-3 0-1 0-1 6-16 4-7 1- 1 0-3 0-1 0-1 2- 5 0-1 o-o 2-2 16-44 0-0 0-0 Seafon ' Totali 13 23 85 225 278 20-24 An 86-85 OT win over Stanford puts Kentucky in the final for the third straight year. By Greg Stoda Palm Beach Post Staff Writer SAN ANTONIO Finish the race. Finish the glass. Finish the game. Those are thoroughbred rules, bourbon-drinking rules and basketball rules. They are, in other words, rules of the Commonwealth of Kentucky. And the Wildcats followed the last dictate finish the game to the letter Saturday night in the Alamodome in a mesmerizing 86-85 overtime victory against Stanford in a Final Four semifinal. The triumph earned Kentucky its third championship-game berth in three seasons. The Wildcats beat Syracuse for the title two years ago, and lost to Arizona in defense of the crown one year ago. Now, the Wildcats draw Utah, which beat North Carolina in Saturday night's other semifinal. But it required monumental effort to get there. It required, among other things, Jeff Sheppard's career-high 27 points. "This team believes in three things," Sheppard said. "Hard work. Teamwork. And a positive attitude." Every aspect of the trifecta became a required element in the face of Stanford's assault. The Cardinal ripped to an 8-0 team came tantalizingly close to knocking off undefeated j Tennessee in the Mideast f Regional championships last j week. She didn't feel much better when she checked her voicemail j soon after: Among a few well-., j Percentages: FG 397, FT .833. Three-point goals: 11-28, .393 (Lee 5-8, Weems 3-11, Saoer 2-3, Mender 1-4, Mosely 0-2). Ttam rtbounds: 1. Blocked shots: 5 (Madsen 2, Sauer, Young, Weems). Turnovers: 13 (Lee 5, Madsen 2, Mosely 2, Seaton 2, Sauer, Weems). Steals: 2 (Jar. Collins, Van Elswyk). Technical fouls: None. FG FT R PFPt M-A KENTUCKY Min M-A ,(i - Nv" , Edwards 26 4-10 2-8 Padgett 38 Mohammed 24 0- T 1- 3 2- 6 2-5 1- 2 0- 6 2- e 1- 4 1-2 7-14 2-8 9-15 2-7 2 3 0- 1 1- 1 Turner Sheppard Evans Magloire Smith Mills Bradley 0-0 2-2 0-0 0-0 0-0 0-2 0-0 0-0 225 29-67 23-33 10-36 16 22 86 Totals Percentages: FG .433, FT .697. Three-point goals: 5-15, .333 (Sheppard 4-8, Edwards 1-2, Evans 0-2, Padgett 0-3. Team rebounds: 4. Blocked shots: 7 (Mohammed 3, Magloire 2, Evans, Turner). Turnovers: 6 (Turner 3, Evans, Mtlls, Sheppard). Steals: 8 (Padgett 3, Sheppard 2, Turner 2, Mohammed). Technical fouls: None. wishers, there were about 10 f messages from agents. "I guess they figured my season was over, so 'Let me call her up,' " said Reid on Saturday after the WBCA All-Star game. "I was still in denial that my college career was actually finished. But it made me realize that now, I , have to look toward my future." Making an impression ,; Seeing what the future holds for women's basketball at this 1 weekend's Final Four wasn't too difficult. Both professional leagues, the WNBA and the ABL, threw big parties. Players were everywhere, as were agents, scouts, general managers and " j coaches. And of course, Nike and 1 17 36 12- 85 32 41 13- 86 Stanford Kentucky A-40,509. Officials Tim Higgins, Robert Larry Rose. Utah 65 North Carolina 59 FG Min M-A lead, and held an advantage PFPt 3 9 29 2-9 throughout the half despite Ken 3-4 FT M-A 4-6 0-0 4-7 2-7 2-2 0-0 R 0- T II 1- 5 0-5 2- 14 04 0-0 0- 0 1- 2 tucky closing to within a point five times. In fact, the Wildcats didn't 6- 11 7- 15 1-1 0- 2 1- 2 UTAH Mottola Jensen ' Doleac , Miller Hansen 1 Jackson McTavish Johnsen Caton Totals get their first lead (54-53 on two Scott Padgett free throws) until 0-0 0-0 0-0 3-7 1-3 1-1 200 24-54 12-22 6-34 14 15 65 10:04 remained in what turned out to be regulation. It was wild from there to the Percentages: FG .444, FT .545. Three-point goals: 5-17, .294 (Jensen 1-1, Hansen I I, McTavish 1-2, Johnsen 1-2, Mottola 1-4, Doleac 0-1, Jackson 0-1, Caton 0-2, Miller 0-3). Team rebounds: 5. Blocked shots: 3 (Mottola, Doleac, Johnsen). Turnovers: 9 (Miller 4, Mottola 3, Hansen, Jackson). Steals: 5 (Jensen 2, Miller, Hansen, Johnsen). Technical fouls: None. finish. The lead changed hands nine more times before overtime. FG FT R M-A THE ASSOCIATED PRESS Madsen during Ken- PFPt 3 7 Min M-A 37 3-8 ball from Stanford's Mark Kentucky's Wayne Turner (5) tries to knock the tucky's 86-85 overtime victory. 0- T 2-9 4-12 1- 2 1-7 0-0 0-2 0-2 0-0 UNC Okulaja Jamison Ndiaye Cota Carter 7-19 0-3 4-9 37 14 3) 32 Reebok were well represented. The American Basketball ' League will begin its third season this fall, the WNBA its second this summer. Initially, those ' ' leagues wanted to grab the ! ! seasoned veteran players, to -' bring home America's best, who'd been exiled overseas. Now, these leagues are going after more college players as both are on pretty firm ground. But where should they draw the line? Talk about double-edged swords. Everyone knows the ' struggles women's sports have gone through trying to gain -credibility and recognition. But with the success comes baggage. Bruce Levy, who has been Teresa Weatherspoon's agent for 11 years, has a strict policy of not speaking to athletes until they're through with their 10-16 0-1 2-12 2 2 3-5 0-2 2-3 She Williams 34 Haywood 8 1-2 0-0 The last of those came when Sheppard, all liquid steel by this time, pumped in a triple to give Kentucky a 69-68 edge. And then he backed it up with another three-pointer to make it 72-68 with 1:17 remaining. Stanford what else? recovered. The final punctuation Only place for Edwards is here Totals 200 27-49 2-7 13-40 14 19 59 Percentages: FG .391, FT .286. Three-point goals: 3-23, .130 (Carter 1-4, Okulaja 1-5, Sua Williams 1-9, Jamison 0-1, Cota 0-4). Team rebounds: 2. Blocked shots: 5 ICarfer 3, Ndiaye 2). Turnovers: 8 (Sha Williams 3, Carter 7. Cota ?, Ndiaye). Steals: 5 (Okulaia 3, Jamison, Cota). Technical fouls: None. 35 30-65 22 37-S9 Utah North Carolina A-40,590. Officials-John Clougherty, Andre Pattilto, Don Rutledge. college careers. Other agents aren't quite so restrained, and Levy estimates there are probably 100 new agents in the business since last season including rap star Puff Daddy and O.J. Simpson defense ' Tournament results ' EAST REGIONAL First round North Carolina M Navy 52 North Carolina Charlotte 77, Illinois-Chicago 62 Princeton 69, UNLV S7 Michigan State 13, Eastern Michigan 71 Washington 69, Xavier 61 Richmond 62, South Carolina 61 Indiana 94, Oklahoma 87, OT Connecticut 93, Fairleigh Dickinson 15 Sec and reund North Carolina 93, UNC Charlotte S3, OT Michigan State 63, Princeton 56 Washington SI, Richmond 66 Connecticut 71, Indiana 6t Regional semifinals North Carolina 73, Michigan State 5t ' Connecticut 75, Washington 74 ' Regional championship North Carolina 75, Connecticut 44 SOUTH REGIONAL First round Syracuse 63, lona 61 New Mexico 79, Butler 62 lawyer Johnnie Cochran. "It's crazy," Levy said. STODA From 1C in life, in fact for someone mourning the passing of a family member or friend to return immediately to familiar and time-consuming tasks ... to, as much as possible, reconstruct business as usual. Nothing wrong with that. Nothing at all. It is no one's right to dictate anyone else's healing process. Or even to suggest what it should be. So it was that Edwards returned to the University of Kentucky basketball team as quickly as he could after his mother, Laura Mae Edwards, died last month. Of course, said the 22 -year-old Edwards, it was what she would have wanted. It was, he didn't say, exactly what he needed. Laura Mae died of cancer Feb. 26, and Edwards, who had started all but one game during the year, missed the Wildcats' regular-season finale. He was back at practice prior to the start of the Southeastern Conference tournament, and took solace in his teammates' affection. One of them, Scott Padgett, had inscribed R.I.P. L.M.E. on each shoe. That didn't make Edwards cry, but almost. What it did do was reassure him that he was in the right place at a difficult time. There was, he had told buddies, nothing to do at home but talk and think. "Every agent tries to take it one step further. Things have gotten out of control. I don't have a shot with some players, because I'm too late." bounds, had five assists and three steals in that victory. AH of that set up Edwards' fourth participation in an NCAA Tournament in four years. But he's an important cog, rather than an inconsequential spare part, at Kentucky these days. He played only three minutes two years ago when the Wildcats beat Syracuse for the title. And he played only six minutes one year ago when the Wildcats lost their crown to Arizona. He has scored in double figures all five tournament games this time around. And it was Edwards to whom Kentucky entrusted its final in-bounds play against Stanford while protecting the one-point lead at the end of overtime. The set play Jeff Sheppard coming off a staggered screen was clogged by Stanford. Edwards, stuck along the sideline with the Wildcats having used all their timeouts, lofted a length-of-the-court pass to streaking Wayne Turner, who managed to control the ball. Turner was fouled. He missed both free throws, but Stanford, too, was out of timeouts and failed on a desperate heave. So, it is that Edwards has another game. One more game. A championship game for himself, and his mother. "I think about her, but I don't worry about her too much," Edwards said. "She's in a better place." He knew of the diagnosis of his mother's breast cancer several years ago, but said she hadn't told him the disease had spread. It was, he said, always Laura Mae's way to spare him any concern. But you wonder about Allen Edwards now. You wonder about a young man who admits he doesn't have a favorite classroom subject. You wonder about a young man who figures he'd be working in a fast-food restaurant without college hoops. And you hope one more game isn't the most important thing that remains in a young man's life in the wake of his mother's death. was a three-pointer Dy Arthur Lee, who led the Cardinal with 26 points, that tied it at 73-73 and forced overtime when Kentucky's Wayne Turner failed to convert a driving layup in the closing seconds before Stanford's Kris Weems missed a desperation shot at the buzzer. Kentucky never trailed in overtime, but was never safe, either. Stanford, trailing by what became the final score, tied up the ball but the possession arrow gave possession to Kentucky with six seconds remaining. The Wildcats got the ball in-bounds and survived two missed free throws by Turner to hold off Stanford. Thanks, mostly, to a senior guard who redshirted last year. "I'm glad I did," Sheppard said. "It wasn't a hard decision." Hard or not, the result a year later was what lifted Kentucky (34-4) to another title game and left Stanford (30-5) wondering what else it could possibly have done. "I'm not sure," Lee said. "When did they get the lead? And how did they hang onto it." Late. Barely. And by following the commonwealth's golden basketball rule finish the game. Money not a draw... yet How soon until players start leaving school early to go pro? Chamique Holdsclaw, a junior at Tennessee, could certainly become a star in one of the professional leagues right now. She's accomplished everything she can as an athlete. She is considered the best women's player ever, and if the Vols win the National Championship tonight, she will have a ring for each year she's been at the school. And cry. And what good would that do? Edwards played in the Wildcats' first game of the conference tournament on the Friday after his mother's death, missed Saturday's game to attend the funeral in Holly Hill, S.C., and then returned to the team again for Sunday's championship game in Atlanta. Edwards scored 15 points, grabbed three re But the money isn't enough of - Oklahoma State 74, George Washington 59 Duke 99, Radford 63 Kentucky 92, South Carolina State 67 Sant Louis 51, Massachusetts 46 Michigan 80, Davidson 61 UCLA 65, Miami 62 Second round Duke 79, Oklahoma State 73 Syracuse 56, New Mexico 46 Kentucky 88, Saint Louis 61 UCLA 85. Michigan 82 Regional semifinals Duke 80, Syracuse 67 Kentucky 94, UCLA 68 Regional championship Kentucky 86, Duke 84 MIDWEST REGIONAL First round Valparaiso 70, Mississippi 69 Florida State 96, Texas Christian 87 Rhode Island 97, Murray State 74 Kansas 110, Prairie View 52 Western Michigan 75, C (em son 72 Stanford 47, College of Charleston 57 Purdue 95, Delaware 54 Detroit 66, St John's 64 Second round Valparaiso 83, Florida State 77 Rhode island 80, Kansas 75 " Stanford S3, Western Michigan 65 Purdue 80. Detroit 65 Regional semifinals Stanford 67, Purdue 5 Rhode island 74, Valparaiso 61 Stanford 79, Rhode island 77 WEST REGIONAL First round Maryland 82, Utah State 68 Illinois 44. South Alabama 51 Illinois State 82, Tennessee 81, OT Ariiona 99, NichoMs State 40 West Virginia 82, Temple 52 Cincinnati 65, Northern Arnona 62 Utah 85, San Francisco 68 Arkansas 74, Nebraska 45 Maryland 67, (Hi noil 61 Arizona 82. lihnos State 49 west Virginia 75. Cincinnati 74 Uteh 75, Arkansas 49 Reornal semifinals Utah 45. West Vtrgima 62 Arizona 87. Maryland 7f ReftonaJ chamatomhip Uten 76, Aruono 51 FINAL FOUR Kentucky 86, Stanford IS. OT Utah 45, North Carolina 59 a draw. At least, not yet. ( "If there's a $30 million package that comes her way, that's a no-brainer," Tennessee coach Pat Summitt said. "But Utes beat top-ranked North Carolina, advance to final right now, staying in school is the best option for her. Allison Feaster is certainly a benefactor of the increased exposure. Her dominating performance as 16th-seeded Harvard upset No. 1 Stanford in the first round of the NCAA , r3 r Tournament drew the interest of the pro leagues. V l-i. I ler answering machine is full now, too. No agents are offering her cash, or jewelry, or cars or trips or clothes, dangling carrots agents have been said to use in men's college sports. . "I really can't see women's sports getting to that level," Feaster, a senior, said. "I hope it Updates and scores Call 511 and enter the codes below for fre- would relinquish his final year of college eligibility to turn pro. "I might never get back to the Final Four," he said. It was a second consecutive disappointing trip after having lost in a semifinal to Arizona last year. That one turned out to end legendary Tar Heel coach Dean Smith's career; this one ended long-time Smith assistant Bill Guth-ridge's first season. North Carolina shot a miserable 39 percent from the field, and the shackling still allowed the Tar Heels only seven free-throw attempts (they made two). And they were 3-of-23 on three-pointers. Miller and Doleac each scored 16 points for Utah, and Miller grabbed 14 rebounds from his guard spot to offset the Ed Cota-Shammond Williams tandem (15 points) for North Carolina all by himself. "They shoot a lot of long jumpers," said Miller in explanation of his board work. Review the three-point statisitic if you don't believe him. Everybody doing everything. That's how it worked for Utah (30-3). Nobody doing enough is how it worked against North Carolina (34-4). "They were tremendous," Carter finally allowed in brief post-game analysis. Sometimes, tremendous is just what plain ol' Utah looks like all bundled up 'in its work. UTAH From 1C Eventually, it bled the Tar Heels dry. "They were just rippin' and running'," said North Carolina's Antawn Jamison. The Tar Heels were standin' and watchin'. The Utes stretched their early advantage to 28-12, and reached the break with a working margin of 35-22 as North Carolina sputtered through the half before making its inevitable run. The Tar Heels closed from a 56-45 deficit to within 57-55 as Utah went more than seven minutes without a basket until Andre Miller's length-of-the-court burst restored some order for the Utes. "I thought," Utah coach Rick Majerus said, "we were playing not to lose right there." But the Tar I leels never caught the Utes. Why? Mostly because they never solved Utah's defensive premise, which was to play to Jamison's left shoulder and contest his favorite spin shot. The primary responsibility went to Utah center Michael Doleac, who paid close attention to the Tar Heel forward lurking near the basket. "We wanted to stay down (on the floor) on him," Doleac said, "and not let him get off more than one shot." quent updates and final results for the college basketball won't get bad. We will maintain a THt ASSOCIATED HHtSS Utah's Michael Doleac, who had 16 points, cheers with fans after the Utes defeated North Carolina. Jamison, who was college basketball's Player of the Year, implements a quick-release jumper hook as a signature move. But he often appeared more panicked than functional while scoring 14 points in support of Vince Carter's 19. "You couldn't ask for a better game (from Utah)," said Jamison, who kissed the flxr upon his departure. He denied that it was any kind of sign he J certain amount of dignity. ' Maybe. Tennessee freshman Semeka Randall throws letters she's already getting from agents right in the garbage can. She's in no hurry to get to the next level. This season, the team met Michael Jordan, and one piece of advice stuck with her: Enjoy it now, because later in life, it becomes a business. What kind of a business will be up to thse women. tournaments. 50 for up to 5 mm. See 2A for more details. FINAL FOUR 3038 Men s 3096 Women $ On the net For the latest scores, games, contests and polls, go to Palm Beach Interactive: ww.fflxomSportsT(WTi

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