LEXINGTON, Ky. (AP) — Back and forth went Marquette and Butler, trading makes and misses in a high intensity rematch that made a case for being the best game so far of this NCAA tournament.
In the end, Vander Blue and the Golden Eagles advanced as the Bulldogs couldn't muster any more of their March magic.
Blue scored 19 second-half points to rally third-seeded Marquette out of another hole, and the Golden Eagles survived 74-72 on Saturday to reach the round of 16 in the NCAA tournament.
"I know everybody in our team, we weren't ready to go home," said Blue, who made a last-second layup to win Marquette's first game of this tournament. "We had two close games — we had a lot of those this year. What we went through earlier this year prepared us for this weekend."
CAL FALLS TO SYRACUSE, 66-60
SAN JOSE, Calif. -- Syracuse overcame poor shooting and a partisan crowd to earn a return trip to the round of 16.
C.J. Fair scored 18 points, James Southerland added 14 and the fourth-seeded Orange survived a second-half drought of more than 12 minutes without a field goal to beat No. 12 seed California 66-60 on Saturday night in the NCAA tournament.
Syracuse (28-9) frustrated the Golden Bears with its zone defense to overcome a dismal shooting night when it made just 39 percent of its shots and missed 15 of 41 free throws.
It was enough to send the Orange to Washington, D.C., for the East Regional where they will play Thursday against the winner of Sunday's game between top-seeded Indiana and Temple.
GONZAGA'S GONE, WICHITA STATE WINS 76-70
SALT LAKE CITY -- Cleanthony Early and Ron Baker scored 16 points apiece and Wichita State hit five straight 3-pointers late to knock the top-ranked and No. 1 seeded Bulldogs out of the NCAA tournament 76-70 on Saturday.
The Shockers (28-8) advanced to the Round of 16 for the first time since 2006, while Gonzaga became the first top seed to be eliminated, giving all the Zags doubters an I-told-you-so moment.
The Zags survived a scare in the second round against Southern but couldn't hold up against a fellow mid-major from Kansas whose motto is "play angry."
The Shockers face the winner of Sunday's game between La Salle and Ole Miss.
RED-HOT OREGON CRUISES PAST ST. LOUIS, 74-57
SAN JOSE, Calif. -- Pac-12 tournament champions. No. 12 seed. Underdogs.
Oregon is happy to carry any label it's given in the NCAA tournament -- all the way into the round of 16.
"We just decided as a team we're going to go out there and we don't care who we're going to play," said Oregon's Arsalan Kazemi, who had eight points and 16 rebounds.
Dotson made his first five 3-pointers to propel Oregon (28-8) into the second weekend for the first time since 2007, when it lost to eventual repeat champion Florida in the regional final. The Ducks made 8 of 11 shots from beyond the arc, while the Billikens finished 3 for 21 from long range.
MICHIGAN BREEZES PAST VCU, 78-53
AUBURN HILLS, Mich. -- Michigan made Havoc look helpless.
Mitch McGary had 21 points and 14 rebounds, and fourth-seeded Michigan breezed through Virginia Commonwealth's vaunted pressure with a clinical performance Saturday, beating the fifth-seeded Rams 78-53 to advance to the regional semifinals for the first time since 1994. VCU couldn't create many easy baskets with its press, even though the Wolverines didn't have much time to prepare for it.
ARIZONA TOO MUCH FOR HARVARD, 51-74
SALT LAKE CITY -- Sometimes, it's rough being the smartest guy in the room.
He'll be heading back to Harvard missing part of his front tooth -- all part of a wicked basketball lesson provided by Arizona in a 74-51 crushing of the Crimson on Saturday in the NCAA tournament.
Mark Lyons matched a career high with 27 points to lead the sixth-seeded Wildcats (27-7), who showed how a real basketball school does it when March rolls around.
"The history of Arizona speaks for itself," coach Sean Miller said. "This time of year, we not only represent ourselves, but all the great players and teams of the past."
This will be Arizona's 15th appearance in the Sweet 16. The Wildcats are heading to Los Angeles for a West Regional matchup against Sunday's winner between Ohio State and Iowa State.
Note: Combined reports.
Whitney O'Bannon is currently a new media sports intern for the Deseret News.
Copyright 2015, Deseret News Publishing Company