Xavier Wildcats are the Cinderella of March Madness

Xavier Wildcats are the Cinderella of March Madness

Seth Andregg

The Xavier Musketeers are on fire on their tournament run for the Final Four and are well on their way. They upset Arizona last night same with 2 other teams in this tournament.

The Arizona Wildcats won’t be coming to the Elite 8 next week, after allowing Xavier to shoot 52.8 percent in a 73-71 loss in the West Region semifinal on Thursday at the SAP Center.

UA wing Allonzo Trier, who heated up for 15 straight Arizona points in the middle of the second half after a cold first half, missed a potential game-winning 3 with eight seconds left. Kadeem Allen also missed a jump shot with 22 seconds left. The loss ended UA’s season at 32-5, while 11th-seeded Xavier moved to 24-13 and into a West Region final game Saturday against Gonzaga for a spot in the Final Four.

It was only the third time UA coach Sean Miller has ever lost to a lower seeded team in the NCAA Tournament, but the second straight year, after sixth-seeded Arizona was bounced by 11th-seeded Wichita State in the first round last season. Trevon Bluiett led Xavier with 25 points. Trier finished with 19 points while Dusan Ristic had 17. Lauri Markkanen had nine points and eight rebounds but only took nine shots, many of which were closely guarded by Xavier’s ever-changing defense. Trevon has been hot all March Madness and has been leading the team for wins. Arizona held an eight-point lead with 1:53 remaining but a 7-0 run pulled Xavier into a 71-71 tie entering the final minute. Ristic missed a heavily guarded eight-footer with 51 seconds left and, when Bluiett had the ball with 40 seconds left, instead of shooting it, he passed under the basket to Sean O’Mara who made what became the game-winning basket.

Xavier is now on its run for the Final Four.