XU holds off late Pitt rally for 71-68 win

The Musketeers are headed to their fourth Sweet 16 appearance in six seasons

MILWAUKEE—Xavier wasn't perfect at the free-throw line down the stretch but they hit enough to knock off the No.3 seed Pittsburgh Panthers, 71-68, on Sunday afternoon at the Bradley Center.

Jordan Crawford scored 27 points to lead the Musketeers to their fourth Sweet 16 appearance in the past six years.

Xavier center Jason Love had a key block on Brad Wanamaker drive with 2:09 to go that led to a Crawford breakaway dunk to give XU a seven point lead. He scored 14 points and pulled down 8 rebounds for the Musketeers.

Pitt junior forward Gilbert Brown hit three three-pointers in the final two minutes to keep the Panther's hopes alive.

But it was all Crawford and point guard Terrell Holloway for Xavier down the stretch. The two combined to score the final 12 points for Xavier and went 8-8 from the charity stripe.

The Panthers had a chance to tie the game with seven seconds to go after Xavier forward Dante Jackson missed two free throws. But Ashton Gibbs' and Wanamaker's three-point attempts were off the mark.

Holloway finished with 13 points for Xavier and Jackson added 9 points, all on three-pointers.

Gibbs scored 19 points to lead the Panthers in scoring. Wanamaker added in 16 points and 10 rebounds, with 11 of the points coming in the second half.

Xavier heads to Salt Lake City with the win where they will meet No. 2 seed Kansas State on Thursday night.


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