SAN FRANCISCO — Arkansas goes to the Elite Eight for the third consecutive March.
To get there, the No. 4 seed Razorbacks had to get previous the staff the NCAA choice committee thought-about probably the most elite staff within the subject, No. 1 total seed Gonzaga, which they defeated 74-68 Thursday night time on the Chase Center.
For Gonzaga, which was within the Sweet 16 for the seventh consecutive year, it was a bitter defeat. The Zags failed at the whole lot they’d excelled in any respect season: Shooting the basketball.
Gonzaga entered the sport main the nation in each scoring (87.8 factors per sport) and field-goal proportion (52.6-percent) this season.
It scored 19 fewer factors than their common and shot 37.5 %. Arkansas (28-8) muddied up the sport superbly, by no means letting the Zags discover any rhythm.
The Razorbacks, who play the winner of Thursday’s late sport between Duke and Texas Tech on Saturday for a berth into the Final Four, made all of the performs in crunch time to safe the victory.
The Razorbacks took a game-high 59-50 lead on a JD Notae 3-pointer with 6:34 remaining within the sport and held on from there.
Gonzaga (28-4) closed the lead to 68-65 with 16.5 seconds remaining, however by no means obtained nearer. Arkansas made its free throws after they have been wanted most. Chris Lykes, a 5′-7″ guard, made each ends of a one-and-one to give the Razorbacks a 70-65 lead with 15.8 seconds left, and so they have been the one factors he scored all sport.
Two extra free throws by Davonte Davis with 8.1 seconds left gave Arkansas a 72-65 lead and clinched it. An exclamation-point dunk by Au’Diese Toney with one second remaining closed it out formally.
Notae led Arkansas with 21 factors on 9-of-29 capturing from the sphere, together with 2-of-12 from 3-point vary. Tret Wade had 15 factors, as did Jaylin Williams, who additionally had 12 rebounds and had a giant half in fouling out Gonzaga’s massive man, Chet Holmgren, who left with 3:29 remaining, with 11 factors and 14 rebounds.
The solely brilliant spot for Gonzaga was Drew Timme, who led all scorers with 25 factors.
When the sport was over, Arkansas coach Eric Musselman made a beeline into the stands to hug his mom, Kris, who was watching her son coach the Razorbacks for the primary time. She’d flown up from her house in San Diego on Wednesday.