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Memphis avoids becoming NCAA Tournament's first buzzer-beater victim


The whirlwind travel schedule finally caught up to Saint Mary’s.

After traveling from Moraga, Calif., to Dayton on Monday to defeat Middle Tennessee in the First Four on Tuesday, the Gaels skipped out of Ohio to go to Auburn Hills, Mich., against Memphis.

Memphis led by nine with three minutes to go, but Eividas Petrulis hit a three-pointer in the final five seconds to give Saint Mary’s a chance at the win. The Gaels’ deflected Memphis’ inbound pass of Tigers guard Joe Jackson to set up the potential game-winning shot.

The Tournament’s first chance at a buzzer-beater, though, missed wide with an airball from Matthew Dellavedova.

On the other side, Memphis got a much-needed NCAA Tournament win, the first under coach Josh Pastner. The fourth-year coach had been under pressure for a lack of big wins in his tenure, including Tournament losses to fifth-seeded Arizona and ninth-seeded Saint Louis. Pastner will have a shot at an even bigger win Saturday against third-seeded Michigan State.

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