Virginia Commonwealth on way to Sweet 16

11th seed tops Purdue

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CHICAGO | The question is no longer whether Virginia Commonwealth belongs. Instead, it’s: Who can stop the Rams?

Bradford Burgess scored 23 points and 11th-seeded VCU made it three victories in five days Sunday night, routing third-seeded Purdue 94-76 to earn a trip to the Southwest regional semifinals.

VCU’s remarkable run sends the Rams to the round of 16 for the first time in school history.

With their fans chanting “VCU, VCU” as the final seconds ticked off the clock, they’ve now ousted Southern Cal, Georgetown and Purdue since Wednesday night.

Deep, fast and talented, VCU (26-11) will now play the winner of Notre Dame-Florida State on Friday in San Antonio.

Jamie Skeen added 13 points in a balanced scoring attack as the Rams led by as many 20, shutting down the Boilermakers (26-8) and, for most of the night, quieting a large contingent of Purdue fans at the United Center.

Speedy floor leader Joey Rodriguez scored 12 points and had 11 assists, controlling the tempo. VCU shot 57 percent and had 26 assists to just four turnovers.

Duke tops Michigan for Coach K’s 900th

CHARLOTTE, N.C. | Duke is no stranger to this situation: Facing an underdog with uncanny touch from 3-point range, one that’s racing downcourt in the closing seconds, scrambling for one last shot at some NCAA tournament magic.

This time, it was Michigan’s turn to miss.

Nolan Smith scored 24 points and the top-seeded Blue Devils held their breath as the Wolverines’ last shot clanged off the iron, sealing a 73-71 win Sunday that marked the 900th victory of coach Mike Krzyzewski’s Hall of Fame career.

“The 900, it means that we’re advancing,” Krzyzewski said. “That’s the main thing.”

Kyle Singler added 13 points for the Blue Devils (32-4), who shot 51 percent, never trailed in the second half and advanced to the round of 16 for the 12th time in 14 years. Next stop: Anaheim, Calif., for the West regional semifinals Thursday night.

North Carolina edges Washington

CHARLOTTE, N.C. | North Carolina’s Roy Williams woke up Sunday morning feeling ill.

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