NIT Roundup : Alford Paces Indiana, 79-57; Lamar, Richmond Also Win

From Times Wire Services

Steve Alford had three steals for layups as Indiana ran off 14 straight points in the first half of a 79-57 victory over Butler in a first round game of the National Invitation Tournament at Bloomington, Ind.

Alford, who had 26 points to top all scorers, also had six in a 10-point spurt that put Indiana (16-13) ahead, 50-30, with 14:37 left. Butler (19-10), which got 22 points from Darrin Fitzgerald, scored 13 straight points to pull within seven but couldn't come any closer.

Lamar 76, Houston 71--Anthony Todd scored 23 points and Puntis Wilson hit four crucial free throws in the final two minutes as the Cardinals (20-11) knocked over the Cougars (16-14) at Beaumont, Tex.

The Cardinals play host to Tennessee Chattanooga Wednesday night in the second round.

Richmond 59, Fordham 57--Kelvin Johnson picked up a rebound from a scramble near the basket and sank a six-foot baseline jumper with three seconds to push the Spiders (21-10) past the Rams (19-12) at Richmond, Va.

The Spiders travel to Indiana Tuesday night for a second-round game.

Tennessee Chattanooga 67, Clemson 65--Gerald Wilkins scored 26 points as the Moccasins (23-7) built a nine-point halftime and held off the Tigers (16-13) at Chattanooga, Tenn.

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