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Layup at buzzer leads Memphis past St. John’s

St. John's guard D.J. Kennedy (1) goes to

St. John's guard D.J. Kennedy (1) goes to the basket while Memphis forward Will Coleman (10) reaches in to block the shot during the first. (March 17, 2010) Photo Credit: AP

Wesley Witherspoon scored 18 points, including the winning layup as time expired, to give Memphis a 73-71 victory over St. Johns in the opening round of the National Invitation Tournament on Wednesday night.

Witherspoon drove down the left side of the lane and shot one high off the glass over Anthony Mason Jr. The ball bounced on the rim and dropped through as the horn sounded for the victory.

Officials reviewed the play, and ruled the basket was made before time expired.

Mason, who finished with 17 points, had connected on a 3-pointer from way beyond the arc with 17 seconds remaining to tie the game at 71, setting the stage for Witherspoon’s final play.

Elliot Williams scored 14 for Memphis (24-9). D.J. Kennedy led the Red Storm (17-16) with 18 points.

The Tigers will next play Mississippi, which defeated Troy 84-65.

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