Friday, March 28, 2008

Sweet 16 Results from Thursday, March 27

(3) Xavier 79 (7) West Virginia 75 OT
It was 8-0 before West Virginia figured out they were playing a basketball game, and they didn't hit a bucket until five minutes had already passed.

...And then it got even worse. By the middle of the first half, the Musketeers were up 28-10 and seemingly on their way to the West regional finals. But the Mountaineers were just getting warmed up as they embarked on a 15-4 run to end the half down by just 7, 32-25.

West Virginia took the lead in the second half and were up by as many as four, but Xavier's players, remembering last season's heartbreaking loss to Ohio State, would not quit and finally won it in overtime, earning the right to face the winner of the Ohio State - Western Kentucky game.

B.J. Raymond hit two crucial threes in the overtime and Josh Duncan topped the scoring list with 26 points, playing most of the second half and overtime with four fouls. Xavier has won 16 of their last 18.

(1) North Carolina 68 (4) Washington St. 47
As expected, the North Carolina Tar Heels, ranked #1 coming into the tournament, thoroughly dismantled the Cougar defense, establishing a double-digit lead before the end of the first half and cruising to another lopsided victory. Tyler Hansbrough scored 16 of his 18 points after the intermission, hauling in 9 rebounds.

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While the win was huge, it was the closest anyone has come to the Tar Heels in the tournament. Their previous two wins were by 39 and 31 points.

(3) Louisville 79 (2) Tennessee 60
Louisville's defense did a number of the Vols, forcing 17 turnovers and a 34% shooting percentage. Earl Clark came off the bench and turned in a dominating performance, with game-highs in scoring - 17 points - and rebounding, with 12 boards. The Cardinals will face North Carolina on Saturday for a chance to reach the Final Four.

(1) UCLA 88 (12) Western Kentucky 78
The Bruins nearly blew a 21-point halftime lead, as the Hilltoppers rallied back to within 4 points in the second half, but held on to win behind Kevin Love's 29 points and 14 rebounds.

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