Bucknell doomed by poor shooting The Bison made only 15 field goals and had 19 turnovers in a 72-56 loss to No. 1 seed Memphis.

Posted: March 20, 2006

DALLAS — Entering his team's second-round NCAA tournament game yesterday against top-seeded Memphis, Bucknell coach Pat Flannery pointed to turnovers and shooting as being the difference between winning and losing.

As it turned out, 19 miscues with the ball and a season-low 15 field goals certainly set the stage for the Bison's 72-56 loss before a crowd of 19,251 at American Airlines Center.

With the win, top-seeded Memphis (32-3) moved into a Sweet 16 contest against Bradley (22-10) on Thursday in Oakland, Calif. It marks the first time that the Tigers have reached that round since losing to Arkansas in overtime in 1995.

Memphis moved on thanks to a pressure man-to-man defense and various traps.

"It was a great defensive effort," said Memphis coach John Calipari, whose team set a school record for wins in a season. "I always go with the same thing - we want to make the game hard for the other team. We did that today."

For Bucknell (27-5), it was the second straight year that the Bison advanced past the first round only to lose.

Yesterday was an uphill battle most of the way for the team from Lewisburg, Pa., though it was up by 10-4 after about five minutes. But once Memphis tied the score at 10-10, the Bison never led again.

They trailed by 31-21 at intermission after a 27-5 run by the winners. Bucknell made 6 of its first 9 shots, then closed the half by making only 2 of 9. The Bison needed to score the last six points to close to within 10 points at the break.

"I did feel like the game was there for the taking from the beginning," said Flannery, whose team committed 12 turnovers during the first 20 minutes. "When we started going backdoor and turned the ball over, that was a little uncharacteristic of us. That means we rushed."

At the end of the contest, Bucknell had center Chris McNaughton (15 points) and guards Kevin Bettencourt (12) and Charles Lee (11) in double figures.

Memphis rode a balanced attack behind Antonio Anderson (13 points), Joey Dorsey (12), Shawne Williams (10) and Rodney Carney (10).

"They have some long guys flying at you, so it was very difficult," Lee said. "I've never really seen us not be able to get into our offense."

"We haven't seen that type of speed in a while," Bettencourt said. "They throw so many guys at you. It was amazing how athletic they were."

Contact staff writer Kevin Tatum at 215-854-2583 or ktatum@phillynews.com.

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