- Associated Press - Saturday, March 5, 2011

HOT SPRINGS, ARK. (AP) - Sergio Kerusch scored 20 points and pulled down 14 rebounds to lead Western Kentucky to a 66-50 victory over Louisiana-Monroe in the first round of the Sun Belt Conference tournament on Saturday night.

Steffphon Pettigrew also had a double-double with 15 points and 10 rebounds for the Hilltoppers (15-15), who advance to play Louisiana-Lafayette in the quarterfinals at Summit Arena on Sunday. Louisiana-Lafayette earned a bye as the No. 2 seed from the West Division.

Juan Pattillo added 18 points and six rebounds for Western Kentucky.

Lawrence Gilbert led the Warhawks (7-24) with 13 points and 12 rebounds, and R.J. McCray added 12 points and Fred Brown 10.

Western Kentucky, which led 24-23 at halftime, was clinging to a 54-50 lead with 2:10 remaining when Kahlil McDonald made a 3-pointer to start off a 12-0 run to close out the game.

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