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Holy Cross stuns Lehigh for Patriot League title to clinch NCAA tournament berth

Lehigh guard Kahron Ross, left, has the ball knocked away from him by Holy Cross forward Karl Charles (1) during the Patriot League Championship game. AP

 

BETHLEHEM, Pa. (AP) — Malachi Alexander scored 26 points and Holy Cross capped its stunning run to the Patriot League title and an NCAA Tournament berth with a 59-56 victory over Lehigh on Wednesday night.

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The Crusaders are 14-19 and failed to win a conference road game during the regular season. Once the tournament started, the Crusaders won at Loyola, beat top-seeded Bucknell, won at Army, then knocked off second-seeded Lehigh (17-15).

The Crusaders are in the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 2007.

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Alexander made 6 of 7 3-pointers, more than enough for the ninth-seeded Crusaders to end Lehigh’s school record-tying 11-game winning streak.

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Holy Cross is the 20th team since 1985 to make the NCAA Tournament with a losing record, per STATS LLC.

Eric Green scored 13 points for the Crusaders.

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