Bloomberg News

Harvard Tops Ivy League Basketball to Win NCAA Tournament Berth

March 10, 2013

Harvard University defeated Cornell University 65-56 to win its third straight Ivy League Conference title and an automatic berth in the NCAA men’s college basketball tournament.

Florida Gulf Coast defeated Mercer 88-75 to win the Atlantic Sun title yesterday and Belmont topped Murray State 70- 68 in overtime to capture the Ohio Valley Conference championship and earn spots in the 68-team National Collegiate Athletic Association field.

At Lavietes Pavilion in Boston, Laurent Rivard scored 17 points and Siyani Chambers had 16 points for the Crimson (19-9, 11-3 Ivy), who won the Ivy League title after Princeton lost to Brown.

The Ivy League is the only conference to award its automatic bid to the regular-season champion.

“I just feel like the basketball gods have been on our side,” said Christian Webster after he watched Princeton fall 80-67 to Brown to eliminate the possibility of a tiebreaker, which Harvard lost three years ago.

Miles Asafo-Adjei scored 15 points and Errick Peck added 14 for Cornell (13-18, 5-9).

Florida Gulf Coast (24-10) was awarded the first NCAA tournament berth in school history after its win over Mercer (23-11). Brett Comer scored 21 points for the second-seeded Eagles.

In Nashville, Kerron Johnson hit a jumper with 1.2 seconds left in overtime as Belmont beat Murray State (21-10) in its first season in the Ohio Valley Conference. The Bruins (26-6) had won five tournament championships in the Atlantic Sun and now have their sixth NCAA berth in eight seasons.

In today’s championship games, Charleston South takes on Liberty in the Big South championship and Creighton faces Wichita State in the Missouri Valley Conference final.

To contact the reporter on this story: Nancy Kercheval in Washington at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Michael Sillup at

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