NCAA Tourney Sweet 16 Day 1 Big 12 Recap... Scores, Recaps and Players of the Game

WOW. When I predicted that Kansas State's Jacob Pullen and Denis Clemente would have 30 points, I meant combined... not damn close to 30 each. But in an epic Sweet 16 game, the Wildcats pulled through, thanks in large part to the guard combination and Curtis Kelly.

See the score, recap and player of the game after The Jump.

Kansas St (2) - 101 2OT
Xavier (6) - 96

Long after the jump shots stop falling and their ballyhooed beards go gray, Kansas State players will look back on this game as one of the best they ever played.

Same for the guys at Xavier, hard as it was to appreciate after a heartbreaker like that.

Jacob Pullen - the guard who brought the phrase "Fear the Beard" to the Little Apple -- hit a pair of 3-pointers in the second overtime to help K-State outlast Xavier 101-96 on Thursday night in the West Regional semifinals.

An instant classic.

"It was two teams that didn't want their season to end," said Pullen, who finished with 28 points.

It added yet another dramatic chapter to an NCAA tournament that has already been crazy. This was the fifth game to go to overtime - and the second that went to double OT.

After knocking off one so called mid-major, the second-seeded Wildcats (29-7) will play another -- fifth-seeded Butler -- on Saturday to try to make their first Final Four since 1964.

This is the first time Kansas State has made it this far since 1988.

The sixth-seeded Musketeers (26-9) were seeking their third trip to the regional finals in seven years. They missed, just barely, but it was hard to call anyone a loser on this night.

"As good a game as I've ever coached or been a part of," coach Chris Mack said.

Trailing by three at the end of regulation, Xavier's Terrell Holloway got fouled while heaving up a 30-footer with five seconds left and calmly made all three free throws. Xavier was down by three again at the end of the first overtime, but Jordan Crawford jacked up a 35-footer that hit nothing but net.

"It was just one of those moments," Pullen said.

One that certainly belongs on YouTube, right beside Crawford's dunk on LeBron James, for sure.

But for Kansas State, this victory might land in a more permanent archive.

 

Full Recap
Player of the Game: Jacob Pullen, Kansas St., 28 pts, 4 reb, 3 assists
Up Next: Kansas St vs (10) Butler

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