Bob Lanier of St. Bonaventure, who does not have to plead to get into the lineup, was superb against Marquette, finishing with 36 points and 16 rebounds as the Bonnies won 84-62.
St. John's had little trouble beating Niagara 97-60, but labored to earn a 51-46 win over Fordham, which was unable to score in the final seven minutes and 10 seconds. Niagara's Calvin Murphy, who had 29 points against the Redmen, poured in 42 as the Purple Eagles beat Iona 104-78.
With Ken Durrett getting 16 points and 21 rebounds, La Salle easily took care of American University 96-72. Then, as Durrett put in 13 of 17 shots, the Explorers beat St. Joseph's 84-67, giving them the Philadelphia Big Five title with a 4-0 record. Providence defeated St. Joseph's 80-77, and then came the tough one for another Philadelphia team. Villanova stopped Canisius all right, but ran into Duquesne at Pittsburgh and suffered its fourth loss, 70-59.
A pair of wins, 70-62 over Rhode Island and 67-63 over Penn State, upped Boston College's winning streak to 11 games. NYU made it nine in a row, outscoring Lehigh 87-70 and Georgetown 87-67. At Rutgers the streak reached eight as the Scarlet Knights beat Georgetown 85-72, Delaware 105-73 and Army for the first time since 1952, 49-47. A 98-80 win over Holy Cross left Duquesne with a 16-2 record. Ed Siudut of the Crusaders, who had 24 points in that loss, scored 36 in a 97-68 win over Massachusetts. Connecticut's Bob Staak sank a "jump shot at the game's end to down Boston University 74-72.
Princeton clung to its two-game lead in the Ivy League, stopping Yale 67-56 and Brown 75-56, as Jeff Petrie of the Tigers scored 30 points in each game. Columbia and Cornell took turns beating Dartmouth and Harvard, while Penn kept pace by downing Yale and Brown.
1. NORTH CAROLINA (19-2)
2. SOUTH CAROLINA (17-3)
3. DAVIDSON (20-2)
Pete Maravich of LSU went on a scoring rampage, totaling 170 points in three games. Averaging 42.8 a game, he is now the first junior in NCAA history to reach the 2,000-point level and already is ahead of Oscar Robertson's two-year record of 1,962 points. Maravich accomplished all this despite an injured right knee, which may be operated on after the season, and a painful growth on his right heel, which has forced him to wear a special shoe with padding. When Maravich was battered to the floor against Auburn, the team trainer and Pete's father, Coach Press Maravich, hurried to his side. Looking his father in the eye, Pete said, "I'm not coming out, so forget it." He stayed in, wound up with 54 points and LSU had a 93-81 Southeastern Conference win. Maravich scored 50 in a 95-79 loss to Florida and had 66—a record for an SEC player—as the Tigers lost to independent Tulane 110-94.
Even more stunning than Maravich's scoring was Florida's 82-81 upset of Kentucky. To win the game, Boyd Welsch of the Gators sank four free throws and a layup in the last two minutes. For the Wildcats, who earlier had beaten Mississippi State 91-69, it was their first loss in a dozen SEC contests. Florida, meanwhile, won three times as Neal Walk had 34 points against LSU, 19 against Kentucky and 24 in a 75-73 win over Vanderbilt. The Commodores also lost to Mississippi 75-68—their sixth defeat in a row—before defeating Alabama 89-74. Moving to within one game of Kentucky with a 10-2 record was Tennessee, which used its stingy defense to hold off Mississippi 61-45 and Georgia 57-55.
South Carolina's strategy against North Carolina not only was precise, it worked. When the defense was not forcing the Tar Heels to shoot over a tight zone, the offense diligently set up multiple screens and picks for John Roche, who took aim 23 times and connected on 17 tries. Roche ended with 38 points, the Gamecocks with a 68-66 win that left them tied with North Carolina for the Atlantic Coast Conference lead.