January 29, 1999
MILWAUKEE - Marquette fans booed every time freshman LeDaryl Billingsley touched the ball - except for the last two, when he missed crucial shots in the closing minutes of Tulane's 65-59 loss to the Golden Eagles on Thursday night.
Billingsley, a Chicago forward who reneged on his pledge to attend Marquette and is averaging 9.3 points and 5.3 rebounds in a reserve role for Tulane, misfired from close range twice in the final 2:21 as the Eagles (11-10, 3-6 Conference USA) scored the final eight points to snap the Green Wave's three-game winning streak.
Tulane (9-8, 3-5) scored just one field goal in the final 12 minutes, Sterling Davis' rebound basket that gave the Green Wave a 59-57 lead with three minutes left.
Billingsley, ridiculed by chants of "Liar! Liar!" from the student section, missed underneath with 2:21 left, and Oluoma Nnamaka sank two free throws at 2:04 to break the tie.
Billingsley missed again from short-range with 1:36 remaining, and John Cliff's acrobatic, driving shot with 15.7 seconds left made it 63-59. The Green Wave missed three shots at their end and Mike Bargen, who led Marquette with 15 points, capped the comeback with a dunk for the final score.
Billingsley, the Green Wave's sixth man and future cornerstone, finished with 5 points and eight rebounds for the Green Wave, who were led by Davis' 16 points. Waitari Marsh added 13 - all in the first half - and Dylan Osean 12.
Nnamaka had 14 points, eight from the line, and grabbed six rebounds for Marquette, and Cordell Henry had 11 points and seven assists.
Marsh's two baskets in the final 30 seconds of the first half capped a 7-0 run that gave the Green Wave a 32-30 halftime lead, Tulane's first advantage since 3-2 on Osean's 3-pointer.
By ARNIE STAPLETON
AP Sports Writer