Villanova & Oklahoma Advance To Final Four
Villanova and Oklahoma became the first teams to advance to the 2016 Final Four with regional final victories on Saturday night. Here’s a recap of the action:
South Region Final
(2) Villanova 64, (1) Kansas 59
Ryan Arcidiacono, Josh Hart and Kris Jenkins each scored 13 points, and second-seeded Villanova upset top-seeded Kansas, 64-59, in the South Region final of the 2016 NCAA Tournament in Louisville on Saturday night. The Wildcats (33-5) advanced to their first Final Four since 2009 as a result of the victory.
Villanova led 32-25 at halftime, but the top-ranked Jayhawks (33-5) rallied in the second half. Kansas guard Devonte Graham sunk a three-point shot with 13 minutes remaining that gave his team a four-point lead, but the Wildcats fought back, taking the lead for good, 47-45, on Arcidiacono’s three-pointer with 8:42 left.
The Jayhawks, who then fell behind 50-45, clawed back and had a chance to tie the game or take the lead with 34 seconds left when Graham lost the ball and got called for a loose-ball foul while trying to recover.
Villanova made its free throws in the waning seconds to secure the win. They’ll play West Region champ Oklahoma in the Final Four in Houston next Saturday.
Graham scored 17 points, and Frank Mason III and Wayne Selden Jr. each had 16 for the Jayhawks, who saw their 17-game winning streak snapped. All-American forward Perry Ellis was held to just four points on the game.
West Region Final
(2) Oklahoma 80, (1) Oregon 68
All-American Buddy Hield scored 37 points, and second-seeded Oklahoma routed top-seeded Oregon, 80-68, in the West Region final of the 2016 NCAA Tournament in Anaheim, Calif. on Saturday night. The Sooners (26-7) advanced to the Final Four for the first time since 2002 with the easy victory.
Hield scored 17 points in the first half, as Oklahoma sprinted out to an 18-point halftime lead, 48-30, while shooting 61.5 percent from the field.
The Ducks (28-7) could not mount a significant rally in the second half. Elgin Cook led Oregon with 24 points and four assists. Teammate Chris Boucher scored 14 points and had 10 rebounds.
Jordan Woodard added 13 points for the Sooners, who will make the fifth Final Four trip in the program’s history. They’ll play South Region champ Villanova in the Final Four in Houston next Saturday.
Oklahoma head coach Lon Kruger will be making his first Final Four appearance since taking Florida to the national semifinals in 1994.