WKU rallies to beat MVSU 59-58 in NCAA opener

By JOE KAY | March 13, 2012 | 9:47 PM EDT

President Barack Obama talks with British Prime Minister David Cameron before the opening game of the NCAA men's college basketball tournament between Mississippi Valley State and Western Kentucky, Tuesday, March 13, 2012, in Dayton, Ohio. Ohio Gov. John Kasich is at far right. (AP Photo/Al Behrman)

DAYTON, Ohio (AP) — T.J. Price's three-point play with 33 seconds left completed Western Kentucky's furious comeback Tuesday night for a 59-58 victory over Mississippi Valley State in an NCAA tournament opener featuring a presidential audience.

President Barack Obama and British Prime Minister David Cameron had front-row seats to see the tournament open with a classic March comeback.

The Hilltoppers (16-18) are the longest of long shots, the only squad in the 68-team field with a losing record. They overcame a 16-point deficit in the final 5 minutes to thrill underdogs everywhere.

Western Kentucky moves on to play Kentucky — the top seed in the South Regional — on Thursday in Louisville, an all-Bluegrass game for the second round.

MVSU (21-13) caught the president's eye while pulling ahead, but couldn't close it out. Western Kentucky won despite shooting 30 percent from the field and turning the ball over 28 times.