Xavier Overcame Adversity To Reach Sweet 16

Xavier Overcame Adversity To Reach Sweet 16

Bernard hit two free throws with 2:07 left to cut the lead to two, and with 1:53 on the clock, Bluiett drew a foul on Markkanen, and tied the game at 71-71 with two more free throws.

"I opted to go with a little bit quicker play, and that one worked for us earlier in the game", Mack said.

Xavier will play Gonzaga Saturday afternoon for a trip to the Final Four.

Added Trier: "We got it to him one time in the post, we swing baseline and then he got under the basket where he couldn't shoot it so he had throw it far out".

"I thought I got a solid look", Trier said.

After that, Xavier closed the gap right back, responding to yet another Arizona mini run.

Sean Miller knows what it feels like to take Xavier to the Elite Eight.

Kansas used two big runs, including an 11-0 charge highlighted by Lagerald Vicks' 360-degree drunk, to coast into a matchup with No. 3 seed OR on Saturday for a spot in the Final Four. The junior guard made his first seven shots, two of them from deep, before missing a 3-pointer with 1:20 left in the half.

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The Thunder shot 42.5 percent from the floor, which isn't good, but it shot 19.0 percent from behind the arc, which is much worse. Meanwhile, Curry continued his hot shooting, a very welcome development for the Warriors, particularly with Durant still out.

Point guard Edmond Sumner eased himself down the hallway from Xavier's practice gym on Monday using a pair of crutches to protect his surgically repaired knee. But as Maloney points out, Gonzaga's well-rested Przemek Karnowski could give the Mountaineers some trouble.

One of the biggest storylines of the night was the Cats' inability to solve Xavier's rotating defense which held UofA to 43.5% shooting and just 25.9% on three-pointers. Could he surprisingly offset Arizona 7-footer Lauri Markkanen, the Wildcats' second-leading scorer, top rebounder and, despite his height, leading 3-point shooter?

Allonzo Trier had 19 points, while Dusan Ristic had 17. They've been doubted to this point - especially against Florida State - so why not prove everyone wrong again? They had played Arizona even for 32 minutes, something few teams had managed this season.

Arizona shot 43.5 percent and had a 35-27 rebounding edge. Arizona started the tournament with a 100-82 victory over No. 15 seed North Dakota one week ago, then defeated No. 7 seed St. Mary's 69-60. He scored four points in 31 minutes Thursday. Xavier and Arizona are two of nine schools who have reached the Sweet 16 since 2008.

Arizona loses 73-71 to Xavier.

Several in-and-out shots from Trier kept Arizona from realizing the dream of reaching the Final Four and will keep Trier in the gym the entire summer wondering what might have been. No team in the Elite Eight has endured a tougher road, and Xavier is fired up about it. It's the second time in three years that these two teams face off in the Sweet 16, with Sean going up against his former assistant, Chris Mack, 47.

- Xavier sophomore G Edmond Sumner was averaging 15 points and 5.0 assists before sustaining a season-ending knee injury January 29.