The Cardinals showed why they were the No. 1 overall seed in the NCAA Tournament by steamrolling all four opponents the first two weekends. They will play No. 9-seeded Wichita State, the tournament's biggest surprise, in the first semifinal game Saturday at 6:09 p.m. ET. A pair of No. 4 seeds, Syracuse and Michigan, will face each other in the second semifinal game Saturday at 8:49 p.m. ET. The championship game is scheduled for Monday, April 8. Louisville (33-5) has won 14 games in a row and won all four NCAA Tournament games convincingly. However, they had to overcome adversity to beat Duke 85-63 in the Midwest Regional final in Indianapolis. Louisville guard Kevin Ware suffered a gruesome-looking injury in the first half, breaking his leg and being taken off the court in a stretcher. Players and coaches were visibly upset by the scene, but they rebounded to win the game easily. The Cardinals had beaten North Carolina A&T, Colorado State and Oregon earlier, winning their four tournament games by an average margin of 21.8 points. Louisville guard Russ Smith is averaging 26.0 points in the tournament. Wichita State (30-8) had a much tougher road to the Final Four, knocking off the No. 1 and No. 2 seeds in the West Regional. Point guard Malcolm Armstead is the team's third-leading scorer, but he's been the Shockers top scorer in the NCAA tournament, averaging 17.3 points. The Shockers were the lower seeded team in three of their four victories. They started with a 73-55 victory over No. 8 Pittsburgh, then knocked off top-seeded Gonzaga 76-70. They beat No. 13-seeded La Salle 72-58 before blowing most of 20-point second-half lead against No. 2-seeded Ohio State before hanging on for a 70-66 win. It's Wichita State's first Final Four berth since 1965. Syracuse (30-9) rode point guard Michael Carter-Williams and its famed zone defense into the Final Four, joining Louisville as the two Big East teams in the national semifinals. Carter-Williams had just four points in the Orange's opening lopsided win over Montana, but he averaged 13.0 points, 4.8 assists and 5.8 rebounds in the four tournament wins. His 24 points in the 61-50 upset of No.1-seeded Indiana in the Elite Eight were crucial. The Orange also beat Cal in the round of 32 and handled Marquette 55-39 in the East Regional final. Syracuse's semifinal opponent, Michigan, had to rally from a 10-point deficit with less than three minutes left in regulation to beat No. 1-seeded Kansas in overtime in the Elite Eight, then breezed by Florida 79-59 in the South Regional final. Trey Burke averaged 15.5 points and 7.8 assists over the four tournament games while freshman center Mitch McGary averaged 17.5 points and 11.5 rebounds. The Wolverines (30-7) also beat South Dakota State and Virginia Commonwealth. .
- Sports & Recreation
- Wichita State