We have half of the Elite 8 filled out..
Last night kicked off the Sweet 16 round of the NCAA Tournament. This is where we find out what teams are made of with history on the line. Few believed that #11 Dayton would make it past the first weekend and now they are in the Elite 8 with a chance to win it all. #1 Florida and #1 Arizona got tested against #4 UCLA and #4 San Diego State but they prevailed and their national title hopes are still alive.
With everything on the line, four teams advanced and four are heading home. Here are the results and recaps of last nights Sweet 16 match ups.
#1 Arizona 70, #4 San Diego State 64
This was the best game of the night. The #4 San Diego State Aztecs gave the #1 Arizona Wildcats their biggest test of the season in the Sweet 16. The Aztecs went into the half up six but Arizona changed the game with their defense and put on a late 10-2 run to cap off the game. The Aztecs challenged the Wildcats by attacking the rim and forcing turnovers but it wasn’t enough to take down the #1 seed.
Freshman Aaron Gordon led the way for Arizona with 15 points. The Wildcats will face #2 Wisconsin on Saturday night in the Elite 8.
#2 Wisconsin 69, #6 Baylor 52
The #2 Wisconsin Badgers were in control throughout most of this game as they took the 17 point victory over the #6 Baylor Bears. This game was fast paced as Baylor tried to speed Wisconsin up but it wasn’t enough as Wisconsin controlled the pace from the tap. Wisconsin’s passing, spacing and shooting was too much for the athletic Bears and their zone to handle.
Frank Kiminsky led the Badgers with 19 points. Wisconsin advance to the Elite 8 for the third time in school history and will face #1 Arizona on Saturday with a Final Four appearance on the line.
#11 Dayton 82, #10 Stanford 72
There is no more doubt. Dayton is legit.
After taking down in-state rival #6 Ohio State and #3 Syracuse last weekend, the Dayton Flyers kept the winning ways going with a victory over #10 Stanford. This athletic squad gave Stanford everything they could handle with their fast break scoring and relentless full court press. This win gives Dayton their first visit to the Elite 8 in 30 years.
This #11 seed is one step closer to a Final Four and possible national championship. Jordan Silbert finished with 18 points for the Flyers. Dayton will face their toughest test of the season as they will take on #1 Florida on Saturday in the Elite 8.
#1 Florida 79, #4 UCLA 68
#4 UCLA gave #1 Florida a great test but it wasn’t enough against Florida and their great defense. The Gators put on a press late in the game and it was too much for the Bruins to handle with an Elite 8 appearance on the line. Head coach Billy Donovan must be given credit for the coaching job he has done with this Florida squad that looks to bring home a national title.
Michael Frazier led the way for the Gators with 17 points. Florida reaches their fourth straight Elite 8 and will face #10 Dayton on Saturday night.
-Patrick Hazel (@pattywack25)