- The Washington Times - Monday, March 23, 2009

From combined dispatches

No. 1 Louisville 79, No. 9 Siena 72: Terrence Williams had 24 points and 15 rebounds, rallying the top-seeded Cardinals in the final minutes for a win over the Saints in the second round of the NCAA tournament Sunday in Dayton, Ohio.

Louisville (30-5) advanced to the round of 16 for the second straight year. The Cardinals will play 12th-seeded Arizona in the Midwest Region on Friday in Indianapolis.

Siena (27-8) overcame a 12-point deficit in the second half and led by four before Williams took over, hitting 3s, getting rebounds and starting fast breaks with one-handed passes.

Edwin Ubiles scored 24 points for the Saints, who handled Louisville’s fullcourt pressure and then applied some of their own. The Cardinals headed to the bench for a timeout with stunned expressions after Clarence Jackson’s lay-in put Siena up 63-59 with 7:20 to go.

Williams took it from there.

The senior forward who was so cool under pressure that he skipped across the court during pregame introductions drove for a basket and hit a 3-pointer that changed the momentum. He had nine points, five rebounds, a steal and two one-handed passes for layups down the stretch.

Louisville had won its last 11 games and the Big East regular-season and tournament titles by applying the pressure - fullcourt, nonstop. The Saints handled it without much problem - only nine turnovers - and applied a little of their own in the second half, making it a game.

They had no answer for Williams.

His two free throws with 35 seconds left put Louisville ahead 76-69 and ended the Saints’ upset chances. The loss extended the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference’s history of never having a team reach the round of 16.

No. 2 Michigan State 74, No. 10 USC 69: An unexpected scoring binge from the Big Ten’s defensive player of the year propelled Michigan State to a familiar place.

Travis Walton scored a career-high 18 points to lift the second-seeded Spartans to a victory over the 10th-seeded Trojans in the Midwest Region in Minneapolis, putting Michigan State in the round of 16 for the eighth time in 12 years.

Durell Summers added 11 points and eight rebounds for the Spartans (28-6), who have advanced to the regional semifinals more times in the last dozen years than any team besides Duke.

They will play third-seeded Kansas on Friday in Indianapolis.

Dwight Lewis scored 19 points and DeMar DeRozan added 18 points for USC (22-13), which is starting to look like more than just a football school under coach Tim Floyd.

No. 12 Arizona 71, No. 13 Cleveland St. 57: The new role as long shots seems to suit the Wildcats fine.

Seeded only 12th, the NCAA tournament perennials took an early 14-point lead and advanced to the round of 16 by beating the upstart Vikings in Miami.

The Wildcats are appearing in the tournament for the 25th year in a row, two shy of the record. But they have never been seeded so low and drew criticism as undeserving of a berth.

Now they’re bound for the round of 16 for the 12th time since 1988, and they will be the lowest-seeded team still playing.

Nic Wise scored 21 points to lead four double-figure scorers for the Wildcats (21-13), who earned a trip the Midwest Region semifinal in Indianapolis. On Friday they will meet No. 1 seed Louisville.

Bracket-busting Cleveland State (26-11), at No. 13 the lowest-seeded team to reach the second round, was unable to duplicate its improbable run to the regional final in 1986. That’s the only other time the Vikings made the tournament.

No. 3 KANSAS 60, No. 11 Dayton 43: The long arms of Cole Aldrich forced the Flyers down for a rough landing.

Aldrich, the 6-foot-11 Kansas sophomore, posted a triple-double with 13 points, 20 rebounds and 10 blocked shots to lead the defending NCAA champion Jayhawks past the 11th-seeded Flyers in the second round in Minneapolis.

Shaquille O’Neal set the NCAA tournament record with 11 blocks in a game for LSU in 1992. Shawn Bradley had 10 in 1991 for BYU. Aldrich’s feat was the sixth official triple-double in the history of the tournament.

Sherron Collins had 25 points to pace the Jayhawks (27-7), the No. 3 seed, which moved on to play the Michigan State in the Midwest Region semifinals Friday in Indianapolis.

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