Second-half slump nearly dooms No. 1 seed Gonzaga in second round

Second-half slump nearly dooms No. 1 seed Gonzaga in second round

The team that had scored seven points off Northwestern turnovers in the first half was now the team that had turned over the ball 11 times (and allowed the Wildcats to score 17 points off those turnovers). "Credit them. They went to the drawing board and made some big plays".

Josh Hart scored 19 to lead Villanova, but the senior guard was stripped by Wisconsin center Ethan Happ on a drive in the final seconds.

Northwestern has become the darlings in their first-ever NCAA Tournament, and while Julia Louis-Dreyfus has grabbed most of the headlines - her son is a walk-on on the team - she has been trumped by one young fan whose emotional roller coaster summed up their tournament run.

With a late run of losses, ODB is now 18-14 offering our bets. Phillips revved up a pep rally audience of 1,000 at a nearby bar before the game by asking the crowd and Northwestern band if they knew the way to San Jose, the site of next weekend's regional final.

They can thank stingy defense and a ridiculous run spanning halftime for this trip to Madison Square Garden. The Musketeers held the Terps scoreless for a 4-minute stretch in the second half which helped them gather a big enough lead, and the scoring of Trevon Bluiett made the difference too.

Three seconds later, Northwestern coach Chris Collins was given a technical foul for coming on to the floor to argue while the ball was in play. On one hand, not even a coach as emotional as Collins can afford to cost his team two points in a close game by receiving an unacceptable technical.

Marial Shayok added a career-high 23 points off the bench on 8-for-14 shooting, while Darius Thompson ended with 10 for Virginia, which advanced to face the victor of the Florida v East Tennessee State battle. "We were hitting huge shots".

Led by Jevon Carter's 24 points, the Mountaineers outshot the Fighting Irish in an 83-71 win on Saturday to clinch their third Sweet 16 berth since 2010.

Also in Salt Lake City, the 1-seed Gonzaga Bulldogs struggled to put the 16-seed South Dakota State Jackrabbits away but eventually got the job done with their vicious defense, 66-46. They're outstanding officials. They made the calls. The Seminoles, the ACC runners-up, end their season at 26-9.

Arizona (-5.5) v. St. Mary's- There may not be two teams in the tournament viewed differently by traditional metrics and advanced statistics.

All over downtown before the game, confidence wore the color purple as Northwestern fans flooded the Salt Lake area. The Wildcats earned an at-large bid, the school's first appearance in 77 years. But Gonzaga returned to a Northwestern team that took advantage of almost every Zags mistake and miscue, clawing its way back to within six with a minute and a half to go.

Vic Law attempts a jumper.

MILWAUKEE - Vincent Edwards scored 15 of his 21 points in the second half, and Purdue held off Vermont 80-70 on Thursday night for its first victory in the NCAA Tournament in five years.

Things changed once those outside shots started falling in the second half. Lauri Markkanen and Rawle Atkins each scored 20 points.

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