Wisconsin 85, Oregon 77
MILWAUKEE — Ben Brust’s school record 228th career 3-pointer may have been his biggest one yet. Brust swished a go-ahead triple from the right wing with just over one minute remaining to boost the Wisconsin Badgers to an 85-77 triumph over the Oregon Ducks on Saturday in the third round of the NCAA Tournament.
Oregon’s Joseph Young drained a trey with just under three minutes left to give the Ducks a 75-74 lead, but after the teams exchanged empty possessions, the Badgers retrieved three straight offensive rebounds before Brust buried the go-ahead shot from beyond the arc. After Young missed a layup on Oregon’s next touch, Traevon Jackson hit two free throws and Jason Calliste finished a layup before Jackson hit another from the line, but left the door open by missing the second free throw. A held ball on the rebound saw possession go to the Ducks trailing by three, but Young was off the mark on a right corner triple and Sam Dekker drilled two free throws with 10.4 seconds left, essentially sealing the outcome.
Oregon owned a 49-37 halftime lead.
Jackson finished with 16 points and eight rebounds, Frank Kaminsky scored 19 and Brust and Dekker tallied 12 points apiece for the Badgers (28-7), who advanced to the Sweet 16 for the third time in four years.
Florida 61, Pittsburgh 45
ORLANDO — It took until the second half, but Scottie Wilbekin and the Florida Gators played like the NCAA Tournament’s top seed on Saturday en route to reaching another Sweet 16. Wilbekin scored a game-high 21 points on an efficient 9-of-15 shooting display and Florida took control after the break in downing upset-minded Pittsburgh, 61-45, in a physical South Region slugfest. Florida (34-2) only turned the ball over six times, committed just seven fouls and won the battle in the paint, 36-24, to earn its 28th straight win.
Louisville 66, Saint Louis 51
ORLANDO —It wasn’t pretty, but Louisville got 21 points from Luke Hancock and played its patented gritty defense throughout the contest to clip Saint Louis, 66-51, and advance to the Sweet 16 in the Midwest Region. Hancock, the hero in fourth-seeded Louisville’s (31-5) second round win over Manhattan, made four 3-pointers in the triumph. He scored eight of the Cardinals’ final 11 points last round.
Michigan 79, Texas 65
MILWAUKEE — Nik Stauskas tallied 17 points and eight assists as last year’s national runner-up Michigan took down Texas, 79-65, to advance to the Sweet 16 in the Midwest Region. Stauskas, one of the most dangerous outside shooters in the country, was part of a prolific shooting effort for the Wolverines (27-8), who set a team tournament record with 14 3-point field goals (14-of-28).
San Diego State 63, North Dakota State 44
SPOKANE — Xavier Thames and San Diego State are headed to the Sweet 16. Thames scored 30 points and the Aztecs pulled away to beat North Dakota State 63-44 on Saturday to reach the Sweet 16 for the second time in four years. The fourth-seeded Aztecs (31-4) moved on to next week’s West Region semifinals close to home in Anaheim, Calif., where they will face the winner of Sunday’s game between top-seeded Arizona and eighth-seeded Gonzaga.
Dwayne Polee II added 15 points in the win and Josh Davis had 13 rebounds. Kory Brown led North Dakota State (26-7) with 13 points while Taylor Braun — the Bison’s leading scorer at 18.0 points per game coming in — scored seven on just 2-of-14 shooting.
Dayton 55, Syracuse 53
BUFFALO — Dayton sweated out another shot at the horn and are off to the Sweet 16 for the first time in three decades. Tyler Ennis’ pull-up 3-pointer at the buzzer was off the mark and Dayton upset Syracuse, 55-53, in the third round of the NCAA Tournament. The 11th-seeded Flyers (25-10), who advanced past sixth-seeded Ohio State in the second round after Aaron Craft’s desperation drive and shot at the buzzer was off the mark, are headed to the Sweet 16 for the first time since 1984. Syracuse (28-6) dropped six of its last nine to close the season after beginning the year 25-0.
Michigan State 80, Harvard 73
SPOKANE — Branden Dawson netted a career-high 26 points and Michigan State held off Harvard, 80-73, in the third round of the NCAA Tournament. Dawson was 12-of-15 from the floor and added nine rebounds for the fourth- seeded Spartans (28-8), who will face either Virginia or Memphis in the Sweet 16. Wesley Saunders sunk all 10 of his free throws and scored 22 points for 12th- seeded Harvard (27-5), which beat Cincinnati to advance to the third round.
Connecticut 77, Villanova 65
BUFFALO — Shabazz Napier poured in a game-high 25 points, as Connecticut upended former Big East foe Villanova, 77-65, on Saturday in third-round action from the East Region of the NCAA Tournament. Lasan Kromah supplied 12 points, while DeAndre Daniels, Ryan Boatright and Terrence Samuel each scored 11 for the seventh-seeded Huskies (28-8), who secured a spot in the Sweet 16 for the first time since 2011, when they went on to win the NCAA title.