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March Madness 2013: Wichita State, Oregon Provide Shockers

Danny Lee |
March 23, 2013 | 9:58 p.m. PDT

Staff Writer

Mark Few's No. 1-seeded Gonzaga Bulldogs will be heading home early this year courtesy of Wichita State. (SD Dirk/Creative Commons)
Mark Few's No. 1-seeded Gonzaga Bulldogs will be heading home early this year courtesy of Wichita State. (SD Dirk/Creative Commons)
The third round slate of NCAA games had been filled with double-digit blowouts early in the day, but leave it up to the aptly-named Shockers of Wichita State to provide a jolt.

The Shockers knocked off No. 1-seeded Gonzaga 76-70 to deliver the first deathblow in the tournament to a top-seeded team. Meanwhile, Oregon continues to make a case to the NCAA selection committee that it probably deserved more than a 12-seed. Here is a synopsis of how the latter half of Saturday's games went down.

Salt Lake City, Utah

(9) Wichita State 76, (1) Gonzaga 70

Safe to say the Shockers left plenty of West Region brackets in shambles with this result.

It appeared Gonzaga had grabbed control of the game when the Bulldogs utilized a 12-0 run to take a 49-41 lead with 11:53 remaining, but head coach Gregg Marshall's Shockers absorbed the blow and hit back. Wichita State outscored Gonzaga 35-21 to finish the game, punching a ticket to the program's first Sweet 16 appearance since 2006.

Ron Baker and Cleanthony Early had 16 points apiece for the Shockers. Kelly Olynyk had 26 points for the Zags on 8-of-22 shooting. Wichita State shot 50 percent from the field, including 14-of-28 from long distance.

With upsets taking a toll on the West, Wichita State will take on the winner of the double-digit seed third round match between No. 13 La Salle and No. 12 Ole Miss in the Round of 16. The Missouri Valley Conference could land two teams in the Sweet 16 if No. 7-seeded Creighton can pull through against second-seeded Duke on Sunday.

San Jose, Calif.

(12) Oregon 74, (4) Saint Louis 57

The No. 12-seeded Ducks were the lone double-digit seed to advance on Saturday, although many would say the Pac-12 tournament champs were under-seeded to begin with.

The Ducks stormed past Saint Louis with a 21-4 run to take a 35-19 lead into halftime that the Billikens could not overcome. Damyean Dotson poured in 23 points to help Oregon earn its first Sweet 16 appearance since 2007. The Ducks torched the Billikens with 8-of-11 shooting from 3-point range, while Saint Louis went an ice-cold 3-for-21.

Oregon marches on to face No. 1-overall seed Louisville in Indianapolis. For the Billikens, the defeat ended a season where they had to overcome the loss of former coach Rick Majerus, who died of heart failure in December.

(4) Syracuse 66, (12) California 60

Syracuse grabbed its first lead two minutes into the game and never let go of that momentum. The ACC-bound Orange shot an uninspiring 39 percent from the field, in addition to a 12-for-19 night from the foul line.

However, Cal fared no better with its 4-of-21 clankfest from 3-point range and 26-of-41 shooting from the charity stripe. C.J. Fair scored 18 points and James Southerland contributed 14 for Syracuse. The Golden Bears received 22 points from Richard Solomon, but Pac-12 Player of the Year Allen Crabbe was held to eight points on 3-of-9 shooting.

Syracuse faces the winner of Sunday's Indiana-Temple game in a Thursday Sweet 16 matchup in Washington, D.C.

Lexington, Ky.

(3) Marquette 74, (6) Butler 72

This third round game provided Big East basketball fans a taste of what could be a new heated rivalry as Butler is scheduled to join the rebooted league in July.

The Bulldogs trimmed Marquette's lead to two after Andrew Smith was awarded with a goaltending goal with 3.2 seconds left. Butler got the ball back with 2.4 seconds after a botched Marquette inbound pass, but Smith's contested 3-pointer missed the mark as time expired. The senior center finished with 17 points and eight rebounds.

Guard Vander Blue turned in 29 points to pace the Golden Eagles' offense. Rotnel Clarke led all Bulldogs with 24 points on 8-of-17 shooting. Marquette will face the survivor of the Miami (Fla.)-Illinois matchup in the Sweet 16.


Reach Staff Writer Danny Lee here; follow him here.



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