SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – Kansas State scored a dramatic 101-96 double-overtime victory over Xavier Thursday night to advance to the Elite Eight of the NCAA Tournament. The Wildcats will next play Butler, an upset winner over Syracuse, Saturday at 3:30 (central time).

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – "That was a classic," said Jamar Samuels.

Jacob Pullen added, "They ought to replay it tonight as an ESPN Classic."

CBS probably wouldn't like that, but for sure it will be a game that will be for sale on DVD.

"That's March basketball at its finest right there," K-State coach Frank Martin said after the 101-96 "Sweet 16" victory in double-overtime over Xavier.

Xavier coach Chris Mack added, "I felt tonight was eerily similar to the Ali – Forman fight."

Throw out all the clichés, and they fit.

It was, as the NCAA Tournament theme goes, "One Shining Moment" of championship basketball.

Back in your face play by Kansas State and Xavier that lasted 50 scoreboard minutes, and 2 hours, 50 minutes of actual clock time. Great players step up in great moments, and you don't advance in the "Dance" without great guard play.

K-State's tandem of Pullen (28) and Denis Clemente (25) combined for 53. Xavier's duo of Jordan Crawford (32) and Terrell Holloway (26) combined for 58.

Kansas State and Xavier went sneaker-to-sneaker in an NCAA Tourney game for the ages before the Wildcats prevailed to advance to the Elite Eight game against Butler on Saturday at 3:30 (central time).

A weary pack of ‘Cats sat slumped in the locker room as Dominique Sutton said, "One more game. One more win and we're cutting down the nets and will be in Indianapolis."

"Greatest win of my life," said Clemente, who has been a part of 93 Wildcat victories. "Magical. Magical moment."

In the end, senior Chris Merriewether said, "It was in God's hands. They made plays down the stretch, we made plays down the stretch. It was a great game."


• 197 total points; 68 field goals and 150 attempts; 91 rebounds (Xavier won 51—40)
• KSU's leading three scorers – Pullen 28, Clemente 25 and Kelly 21 – combined for 74 points; Xavier's top two – Jordan Crawford 32, Terrell Holloway 26 – netted 58.
• K-State played 50 minutes, but committed only 12 turnovers.
• The game featured 13 ties and 17 lead changes. Xaiver never led by more than two points, and K-State led by as many as 15 in the first half.


• It was KSU's fifth NCAA overtime game. The ‘Cats are now 3-2. The most recent came in 1987 in Salt Lake City when K-State defeated Georgia, 82-79.
• It's KSU's third highest NCAA scoring game. The record is 107 in 1970 when the Wildcats defeated Houston, 107-98. In 1959, K-State knocked off DePaul, 102-70.
• In OT games this year, K-State is now 1-2 having lost the other two games to Kansas, 81-79, and to Iowa State, 85-82.

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