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March Madness recap: Arkansas thrills, Texas pulls away to cap NCAA Tournament's stay in Des Moines

Even though it feels like the fun has just begun, it's already over.

It was a memorable final day for the tournament in Des Moines. Wells Fargo Arena played host to one of the biggest upsets of the postseason so far. Top-seeded Kansas, the defending national champions, saw their hopes of a repeat vanish at the hands of 8-seed Arkansas in the final moments of the game.

More:Hines: Arkansas strips Kansas of title defense hopes, gives Des Moines a show in NCAA Tournament

Then in the nightcap, Penn State gave Texas a scare late, but the Longhorns were able to pull away late to secure a spot in the Sweet 16.

Here's a recap of everything that happened Saturday at The Well.

FINAL: Texas 71, Penn State 66

The Nittany Lions put on a show at the end, but the 10-0 run by Texas in the dying minutes sealed this one for the Longhorns.

Dylan Disu led Texas with 28 points en route to the win that puts them in the Sweet 16. Camern Wynter had 16 points to lead the Nittany Lions.

Penn State finishes its season with a 23-14 record while Texas improves to 28-8.

10-run fuels Texas

A 10-0 run over the last three-plus minutes pushed the Longhorns to a seven-point lead. Penn State just got a bucket to end the streak and bring the game back to 65-60, but there's only 41.5 ticks left on the clock.

Texas answers back

The Longhorns take the lead right back thanks to a 6-0 run. Texas on top 61-58 with 2:02 remaining. Might want to get to a TV if you're not watching this one.

Nittany Lions take the lead

For the first time since less than two minutes into the game, Penn State has a lead over 2-seed Texas thanks to a couple of free throws from Camern Wynter. A steal and an easy layup on the following possession extends the Nittany Lions' lead to three with 4:22 left.

PSU up 58-55.

We've got a game brewing

Penn State, which has trailed virtually the entire game, is on the verge of taking over. They're down just four points, 55-51, with over six minutes to play.

Buckle up, cause we may have another exciting finish in store.

Penn State guard Evan Mahaffey guards Texas forward Dylan Disu during an NCAA menÕs basketball tournament second round basketball game on Saturday, March 18, 2023, at Wells Fargo Arena, in Des Moines, Iowa.
Penn State guard Evan Mahaffey guards Texas forward Dylan Disu during an NCAA menÕs basketball tournament second round basketball game on Saturday, March 18, 2023, at Wells Fargo Arena, in Des Moines, Iowa.

Back underway in Des Moines

The final 20 minutes of basketball for the metro's role in the 2023 NCAA Tournament has begun.

HALFTIME: Texas 31, Penn State 23

Marcus Carr drills a bucket at the buzzer to extend the lead for the Longhorns. He's got four points on the night. Senior center Dylan Disu is the leading scorer for Texas with 10 points.

Senior guard Camern Wynter leads Penn State with 10 points at the break.

The Nittany Lions got to this game by dominating from beyond the arc on Thursday. But tonight, they're shooting just 15% from long range going 2-of-13 from deep.

Penn State and Texas starting now

The final game of the 2023 NCAA Tournament inside Wells Fargo Arena is underway.

Sweet for the Razorbacks

Arkansas is moving on.

The Razorbacks bounced defending national champion Kansas from the NCAA Tournament with a 72-71 victory Friday in the second round.

Arkansas now has made the Sweet 16 in three consecutive years.

Kansas, playing without coach Bill Self as he recuperates from a heart procedure, led for most of the game, but were overtaken late by Arkansas and were unable to match them basket for basket down the stretch.

Ricky Council IV was huge for the Razorbacks, finishing with 21 points and getting Arkansas over the hump in the final minutes.

More to come from this game - and we've got another on tap with Penn State and Texas ready to go.

- Travis Hines

At the half

A spirited first half comes to an end with No. 1 Kansas leading No. 8 Arkansas, 35-27, at the break.

Jalen Wilson leads the way for the Jayhawks with nine points while Ricky Council IV leads the Razorbacks with 10 points.

Kansas is shooting 50 percent from the floor. Arkansas is shooting 35 percent from the floor and is 1-9 from 3-point range.

At late half development was Kansas point guard Dajuan Harris, Jr. leaving the game with an apparent ankle injury after he landed awkwardly near photographers on the baseline. He had four points, three rebounds and four assists while directing the Jayhawk offense at a high level before the injury.

It's unclear if Harris will return for the second half, but he headed into the locker room early before the break.

- Travis Hines

We're getting underway

The second round of the NCAA Tournament is set to begin at Wells Fargo Arena with No. 1 Kansas and No. 8 Arkansas set to tipoff.

This game figures to be a battle between Kansas' skill and experience against Arkansas' length and athleticism. Both teams have enjoyed recent tournament success with the Jayhawks the defending national champs while the Razorbacks have been to back-to-back Elite 8s.

Kansas is without coach Bill Self, who will miss fifth-straight game after undergoing a heart procedure last week.

- Travis Hines

Former VP Mike Pence to attend Kansas vs. Arkansas game

Pence was in town already for a foreign policy forum and decided to take in some March Madness while he was here.

In an interview with the Des Moines Register, former Vice President Mike Pence said he was planning to go watch the Kansas vs. Arkansas game Saturday afternoon. But his home-state, top-seeded Boilermakers lost to 16-seed Fairleigh Dickinson University Friday.

"My son and daughter-in-law are Purdue graduates," said Pence, a former governor of Indiana. "Our hearts were broken last night. But I've gotta give that Iowa coach of FDU all the credit in the world. I'm gonna be watching that team the rest of the tournament."

Fairleigh Dickinson's coach, Tobin Anderson, is a native of Truro, Iowa.

"It's gonna be a good game. It'll be a real good game," Pence said of Saturday's matchup in Des Moines.

"But yeah, no, we were --" he said before breathing a deep sigh. "My only consolation is the Hoosiers won."

Famous faces turn their eyes to Des Moines

March Madness always brings out celebrities and other famous folks putting their attention on the Tournament. Just this weekend in Des Moines we've seen Ving Rhames, Dallas Clark and Vice President Kamala Harris show up at Wells Fargo Arena.

More:Famous celebrities, pro athletes turn their eyes to Des Moines for the NCAA Tournament

There's still two more games on tap too, so who knows who else could show up today.

Who should Iowans root for?

Well, if you're a fan of Iowa, Iowa State or Drake's men's basketball teams, your March got a lot more depressing this weekend. All three teams were bounced from the opening round of the Tournament between Thursday and Friday.

But fear not, there are still plenty of other exciting teams to adopt as your own for the remainder of the Tournament. Why not take up the flag for one of the four teams still competing here in the metro?

More:Hines: With our teams crashing out of the men's NCAA Tournament, who should Iowans cheer for Saturday?

Travis Hines took a look at who the next logical team for Iowans to root for is. The answer may surprise y'all.

This article originally appeared on Des Moines Register: March Madness in DSM: Arkansas, Texas advance to Sweet 16 on Saturday