No. 16 Saint Louis 72, Charlotte 55

Associated Press  |  Last updated March 15, 2013
Dwayne Evans played through foul trouble to score 25 points on near-perfect shooting, and top-seeded Saint Louis pulled away early to beat Charlotte 72-55 in the quarterfinals of the Atlantic 10 tournament Friday. The 16th-ranked Billikens (25-6) ensured the 49ers would not be making any crazy comebacks this time by forcing 20 turnovers and turning them into 21 points. A day earlier, ninth-seeded Charlotte (21-11) came from behind to shock Richmond 68-63 by hitting eight free throws in the final five seconds after the Spiders were called for three technical fouls. Evans made his first seven field goal attempts before finally missing on one of his easiest chances of the day, a putback that bounced off the rim with just over 7 1/2 minutes remaining. He finished 8 for 9 from the floor and 9 for 9 from the foul line and added nine rebounds. Chris Braswell led the 49ers with 20 points and nine rebounds. After Charlotte hit its first two 3-pointers of the tournament to pull within 19-16, Saint Louis scored 13 straight points in just two minutes. The Billikens forced three turnovers and hit three 3-pointer to take a 32-16 lead with more than 8 1/2 minutes left in the first half. Charlotte never got closer than seven the rest of the way. Evans was limited to 10 minutes in the first half after picking up his second foul with 7:37 left. He still managed 11 points on 4-for-4 shooting. He was called for this third foul early in the second half and went to the bench. But with Charlotte threatening to make a run, he returned - and immediately scored inside to put Saint Louis back up 43-33 with more than 14 minutes to go. That sparked an 11-3 run, with Evans accounting for eight of the points that returned the lead to 16. Pierria Henry, who hit the eight free throws Thursday that give Charlotte the win, got caught by an elbow from Jordair Jett in the lower neck late in the game and stayed on the floor for several minutes, short of breath. He eventually walked off the court under his own power, still in obvious discomfort. The officials ruled Jett did not raise his elbows illegally. Saint Louis will face La Salle or Butler in Saturday's semifinals.
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