The Latest on the second round of the NCAA Tournament (all times Eastern):
Action is underway in Charlotte for the West Region second-round game between No. 2 seed North Carolina and No. 7 seed Texas A&M.
The reigning national champion Tar Heels are trying to improve to 35-1 in NCAA Tournament games in their home state, with the lone loss coming in 1979. Meanwhile, the Aggies are trying to reach the Sweet 16 for only the third time since the tournament expanded to 64 teams in 1985.
Also of note: 2016 national champion Villanova lost to Wisconsin in last year’s second round.
The winner gets Michigan in the regional semifinals in Los Angeles.
– Aaron Beard reporting from Charlotte, North Carolina
Michigan State’s season is over after the Spartans were eliminated by 11th-seeded Syracuse in their own backyard.
Despite a partisan crowd cheering them on in Detroit, the Spartans missed their last 14 shots from the field and lost 55-53.
The Orange were led by Tyus Battle’s 17 points and won for the third time in five days to secure an improbable Sweet 16 matchup against second-seeded Duke.
Michigan State’s loss is a bracket-buster for many college hoops fans, with more than a quarter of those who filled out brackets on ESPN picking the Spartans to reach the Final Four.
– Noah Trister reporting from Detroit.
Syracuse grabbed its first lead of the second half on Michigan State as the Spartans just can’t buy a basket. The Spartans have not scored in 2:09 and an Orange 7-0 made it 50-48 for Syracuse, the 11th seed and final at-large team picked for the tournament.
Michigan State is shooting 30 percent, but has 24 offensive rebounds.
For the second game in a row, Miles Bridges threw down an emphatic dunk that got the pro-Michigan State crowd in Detroit fired up.
This time it was a one-handed slam after Bridges drove to the basket from the right wing. That highlight gave the Spartans a 44-39 lead with about 7:30 remaining in the second half.
It’s been tough sledding for Michigan State against the Syracuse defense, but the Spartans have 21 offensive rebounds and a 19-3 lead in second-chance points.
More bad news for Syracuse, Frank Howard, one of its few reliable scorers, fouled out with about 6:30 left, being whistled on an inbounds pass near midcourt.
Michigan State can’t get any distance from Syracuse. The second-round games is grinding along in Detroit, with neither team shooting better than 40 percent from the field.
The Spartans have 18 offensive rebounds, but are on pace for way under their 81-points-per-game average, leading Syracuse 40-39 with 10:02 left.
The first half was Syracuse’s kind of game. The Orange and Michigan State slogged along on the offensive end, missing a bunch of shots from everywhere. The Spartans grabbed a 25-22 lead when Matt McQuaid hit a 3 at the buzzer. Even that was less-than-smooth. McQuaid had his shot blocked right back to him and then in one motion threw up a bank shot before the clock expired.
Michigan State avoided its lowest scoring half of the season by a point.
The Syracuse zone is making Michigan State uncomfortable. The Orange lead the Spartans 14-12 with just under eight minutes left in the first half in Detroit. The Spartans are 3 for 17 from the field. Syracuse has been one of the worst offensive teams in the country, but they beat Arizona State and TCU by holding them to almost 30 points under their per game averages.
The second game of the day is underway and Michigan State fans have packed the arena in Detroit to watch the third-seeded Spartans face Syracuse, the 11th seed that won a First Four game to get into the Midwest Region.
Michigan State is still trying to find the soft spots in Syracuse’s zone. The Spartans were up 7-6 almost six minutes in.
Next up for Purdue in the Sweet 16 is Texas Tech and coach Chris Beard.
While those two teams haven’t played since 1998, Boilermakers fans surely remember Beard – for all the wrong reasons.
Beard was the coach at Arkansas-Little Rock when the 12th-seeded Trojans shocked Purdue 85-83 in the first round of the NCAA Tournament just two years ago.
Texas Tech was the Big 12 runner-up this season, and is in its first Sweet 16 since 2005.
Vincent Edwards scored 20 points and Dakota Mathias made a clutch 3-pointer with 14.2 seconds left, helping second-seeded Purdue over 10th-seeded Butler hold on for a 76-73 win Sunday in the second round.
The Bulldogs trailed by 10 with less than 6 minutes left and had a shot to tie the game when they had the ball with 1.8 seconds left. Butler’s Kamar Baldwin just missed a long 3-pointer that a game official said was released before the buzzer as he walked off the court.
Purdue overcame the loss of Isaac Haas by relying on redshirt freshman Matt Haarms, who made his first start in place of the injured senior standout.
The Boilermakers (30-6) will face Texas Tech (29-6) in the East Regional on Friday in the NCAA Tournament’s round of 16 in Boston.
Purdue redshirt freshman Matt Haarms made the most of his opportunity to fill in for Isaac Haas, scoring 7 points and grabbing five rebounds in 17 minutes to help third-seeded Purdue lead 10th-seeded Butler 40-36 at halftime Sunday in the second round of the NCAA Tournament.
Haas wasn’t cleared by the officials to play with a broken elbow protected by a bulky brace that covered much of his right arm because it didn’t meet the NCAA’s player safety standards. The 7-foot-2, 290-pound center was ruled out for the rest of the NCAA Tournament after being hurt Friday night in a win over Cal State Fullerton, but he warmed up and looked like he was trying to play against the Bulldogs.
Haas was averaging 14.7 points, second on the team. The 7-3 Haarms averaged just 4.7 points, 3.1 rebounds and 16.6 minutes per game in 35 games off the bench this season. He surpassed his average in playing time in the first half alone, logging 17 minutes for coach Matt Painter.
Butler led by as much as 9 and didn’t trail until the 2:53 mark of the first half. Kelan Martin had 14 points and Kamar Baldwin scored 10 for the Bulldogs over the opening 20 minutes.
Vince Edwards scored 12 points and picked up a third foul just 3 seconds before halftime.
Purdue center Isaac Haas stayed on the bench while his team started its game against Butler, despite warming up beforehand while wearing a large brace to protect his broken right elbow.
Referee DJ Carstensen told The Associated Press during warmups Sunday that Haas would not be allowed to play with the brace.
Haas wore a long sleeve black shirt that said “Empathy” in white and black warmup pants as his teammates began the game.
Starting instead for the Boilermakers is redshirt freshman Matt Haarms. He’s 7-foot-3, an inch taller than Haas.
Purdue’s dramatics surrounding its star 7-foot-2 center are spicing up right before its game for a spot in the Sweet 16.
Purdue center Isaac Haas is warming up and taking shots two days after breaking his right elbow.
It’s unclear whether Haas will play Sunday for the No. 2 seed Boilermakers against Butler, after his school initially ruled him out for the rest of the NCAA Tournament.
Haas was welcomed by a relative roar from the dozens of fans in their seats less than an hour before tipoff. He had a bulky, black brace protecting his broken right elbow as he shot with both hands during warmups with his teammates.
The Ramblers are moving on. Are the Retrievers ready to run with them to the Sweet 16?
UMBC etched its name in sports lore when it became the first No. 16 seed to beat a 1 in 136, downing the top overall seed Virginia by 20 points in the first round. Now it’s time to see if the Retrievers can put all those post-victory texts and congratulatory calls when they play No. 9 seed Kansas State on Sunday with a Sweet 16 berth at stake.
West Virginia – the state itself – can’t really lose Sunday when 13th-seeded Marshall meets Bob Huggins and his West Virginia Mountaineers for a berth in the regional semifinals. They’re the only two Division I colleges in the state that play the men’s game. The game highlights the fact that the teams don’t regularly meet in the regular season.
And star center Isaac Haas threw some uncertainty around No. 2 seed Purdue’s matchup with No. 10 seed Butler, after Purdue announced he would be out for the tournament with a fractured right elbow. Haas practiced some with his team on Saturday.
The other games for Sweet 16 berths on Sunday include Michigan State against Syracuse, North Carolina versus Texas A&M, Cincinnati against Nevada, Clemson playing Auburn and No. 1 seed Xavier playing Florida State.
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