RJ Davis goes for 20 as North Carolina beats Michigan State 85-69

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — RJ Davis scored 20 points to help North Carolina beat Michigan State 85-69 in the NCAA Tournament on Saturday, pushing the Tar Heels to the Sweet 16 while keeping them unbeaten in March Madness against Spartans Hall of Fame coach Tom Izzo.

Harrison Ingram made five 3-pointers and scored 17 points for the West Region’s top seed, which continued its NCAA success in its home state. UNC (29-7) ran off 17 straight points during a 23-3 run over the last eight minutes of the first half to erase a 12-point deficit, then continued answering every push by the Spartans after halftime.

The Tar Heels improved to 5-0 in the tournament against Izzo, including victories in the 2005 Final Four and 2009 title game. And they move on to the regional semifinals in Los Angeles, where they will face either Grand Canyon or Alabama on Thursday night.

UNC also got a strong showing inside from Armando Bacot (18 points), who got into the paint to score, draw fouls or kick out against oncoming double teams. Ingram was on the receiving end of some of those, knocking down 5 of 7 3-pointers to go with seven rebounds.

Tyson Walker scored 24 points for the ninth-seeded Spartans (20-15).



OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — Tamin Lipsey scored 15 points, Iowa State cranked up the second-half pressure against Washington State, and the No. 2 seed Cyclones marched into their seventh Sweet 16 with a victory over the seventh-seeded Cougars in the NCAA Tournament.

Curtis Jones added 14 points and Keshon Gilbert and Milan Momcilovic had 10 apiece for the Cyclones (29-7), who made it to the second weekend of the tourney for the second time in three years. They will play third-seeded Illinois in the East Region semifinals on Thursday night at TD Garden in Boston.

Jaylen Wells scored 20 points and Myles Rice had 13 for the Cougars (25-10), who were sent back to the Palouse still searching for their first Sweet 16 appearance since Tony Bennett was on the sideline in 2008.


OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — Terrence Shannon Jr. scored 30 points, Marcus Domask added 22 and No. 3 seed Illinois made fast work of 11th-seeded Duquesne in a victory to reach the NCAA Tournament’s Sweet 16 for the first time since 2005.

Illinois (28-8) hadn’t made it through the first weekend of the tournament in eight previous appearances, a maddening run of frustration the Illini ended in resounding fashion.

The Illini will play No. 2 seed Iowa State in an East Region semifinal in Boston on Thursday night.

Duquesne (25-12), which came in on a nine-game win streak, had its first tournament appearance since 1977 end with its worst loss of the season that sent 65-year-old coach Keith Dambrot into retirement.

Jimmy Clark III scored 14 points and Fousseyni Drame had 13 for Duquesne.



CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — Dalton Knecht scored 18 points and made four free throws in the final 8.8 seconds as Tennessee topped Texas to advance to the Sweet 16 of the NCAA Tournament for the second straight year.

Second-seeded Tennessee will play No. 3 Creighton.

Jonas Aidoo had 11 points and Tober Awaka added 10 for the Volunteers (26-8), helping coach Rick Barnes beat the team he coached for 17 seasons. The Vols have reached the Sweet 16 three times in nine seasons under Barnes, but have yet to advance out of that round in that stretch.

Tyrese Hunter and Chendall Weaver each had 13 points for seventh-seeded Texas (21-13).

The Vols shot just 29% from the field in the first half, but managed to take a 38-29 lead into the locker room.

Knecht struggled early on, missing his first four shots, including an air ball on a fadeaway jumper. The AP All-American converted his first field goal with 90 seconds remaining in the first half, putting Tennessee up by 11.


PITTSBURGH (AP) — Steven Ashworth and Ryan Kalkbrenner made 3-pointers in the second overtime and Creighton edged past its former coach, Oregon’s Dana Altman, to move into the Sweet 16 of the NCAA Tournament with a win.

The 3s by the 6-foot-1 Ashworth and a rare one by the 7-1 Kalkbrenner helped the third-seeded Bluejays (25-9) score the first 15 points of the second OT to finally put away the 11th-seeded Ducks (24-12).

Ashworth scored 21 points, Trey Alexander added 20 and Kalkbrenner 19 for Creighton, which will make its third Sweet 16 appearance in four years when it faces Tennessee next week in the Midwest Regional in Detroit.

It took balance, big shots, clutch free throws and poise for the Bluejays to overcome Oregon’s 1-2 punch of Jermaine Couisnard and N’Faly Dante.

Couisnard, who had 40 points in the first round against South Carolina — his former school — had 32 and Dante added 28 points and 20 rebounds.

NO. 18 GONZAGA 89, NO. 17 KANSAS 68

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — Gonzaga played a nearly perfect second half, busting open a back-and-forth game with a 15-0 run Saturday to pull away from Kansas for a win and extend its nation-best streak of trips to the Sweet 16 to nine.

Anton Watson shot 8 for 11 for 21 points on an afternoon when basically everyone in a navy jersey was a star, especially after halftime.

The fifth-seeded Zags (27-7) made their first five 3-pointers of the second half, not missing from long range until 1:30 remained and the game had long entered extended garbage time.

Mark Few’s team will make its regular trip to the second weekend to play the winner of Sunday’s game between Purdue and Utah State.

Nolan Hickman finished with 17 points for the Zags, and big man Graham Ike had 15 points and nine rebounds, going toe to toe with KU’s Hunter Dickinson, who finished with a quiet 15 points. Making all the Bulldogs look good was Ryan Nembhard, who blew off a rough shooting night (1 for 6) and finished with 12 assists.

During Gonzaga’s 15-0 run, the Jayhawks (23-11) missed 10 straight shots and never got within single digits again.



PITTSBURGH (AP) — DJ Burns Jr. scored 24 points, including a go-ahead putback that ignited a 9-0 run in overtime, and 11th-seeded North Carolina State beat 14th-seeded Oakland in the second round of the NCAA Tournament.

Powered by their versatile 6-foot-9, 275-pound forward, the Wolfpack (24-14) advanced to the Sweet 16 for the first time since 2015 by finally pulling away from 3-point specialist Jack Gohlke and the Golden Grizzlies (24-12) in the extra period.

N.C. State will face either second-seeded Marquette and 10th-seeded Colorado in Dallas on Friday in the South Region semifinals.

Michael O’Connell had 12 points for the Wolfpack. DJ Horne and Casey Morsell added 11 apiece. Jayden Taylor came off the bench in overtime to hit a 3-pointer that put N.C. State ahead by five.

Oakland, which ousted third-seeded Kentucky on Thursday, just missed becoming the first 14 seed to reach the Sweet 16 since Chattanooga in 1997.



SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — Caleb Love scored 19 points and second-seeded Arizona reached the Sweet 16 for the second time in three seasons, beating No. 7 seed Dayton in the second round of the NCAA Tournament.

The Wildcats (27-8), who also reached a regional semifinal in 2022 in coach Tommy Lloyd’s first season, will face either the West Region’s No. 6 seed, Clemson, or third-seeded Baylor in Los Angeles on Thursday night.

Keshad Johnson and Pelle Larsson each had 13 points and seven rebounds for Arizona. Larsson also had six assists, and Jaden Bradley scored 12 points off the bench. The Wildcats shot 53% from the field and made eight 3-pointers.

DaRon Holmes II had 23 points and 11 rebounds for the Flyers (25-8), who were denied their first Sweet 16 appearance since 2014. Koby Brea added 14 points and Kobe Elvis scored 13 for Dayton, which trailed by 17 points in the first half but stayed within striking distance nearly to the end.

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