NCAA Tournament 2016: B/R Expert Predictions, Updated Results for 2nd Round

Bleacher Report College Basketball StaffFeatured ColumnistMarch 19, 2016

NCAA Tournament 2016: B/R Expert Predictions, Updated Results for 2nd Round

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    Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

    The opening weekend of the 2016 NCAA tournament is over, but Sunday brought plenty of drama as teams attempted to punch their tickets to the Sweet 16.

    After a wild first round, the opening day of the second round was a bit tamer with only No. 11 Gonzaga qualifying as a major upset winner, although the Bulldogs certainly looked like a legitimate contender in their blowout over No. 3 Utah.

    Those looking for chaos found it on Sunday, however. A potential Cinderella story instead lost what should've been an insurmountable lead. Elsewhere, last-second shots eliminated a No. 2 seed but saved a No 6 from falling to a mid-major darling.

    As the games went final, we updated them with results from the action that unfolded.


    Preview analysis on the following slides written by Kerry Miller. Advanced statistics courtesy of

    Check out Bleacher Report's live updating bracket to track your picks along the road to the Final Four.

No. 2 Villanova 87, No. 7 Iowa 68

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    Elsa/Getty Images

    After a pair of disappointing early exits, Villanova ensured this year would be different.

    The Wildcats had lost in the second round in each of the last two years, but came out ready to play against Iowa. They jumped out to a 54-29 lead at halftime and never looked back to earn a 19-point win. They simply could not be contained while shooting an incredible 59.3 percent from the field, including 10-of-19 from three.

    While Villanova had built an offensive reputation over the past few years, it was the defense that really stood out on Sunday. Iowa couldn't get open shots early and totaled 13 turnovers, many of them leading to easy baskets on the other end as the Wildcats finished with an 18-0 advantage on fast-break points.

    Although the Hawkeyes did cut into the lead late as Villanova slowed down the pace, the outcome was never in doubt after the opening few minutes as the Big East regular-season winners cruised to an easy win.


    Top Performers

    Villanova once again had a balanced effort offensively, although Josh Hart might have been the most impressive with 19 points on 7-of-11 shooting and five rebounds. Iowa couldn't get much going, but Nicholas Baer deserves credit for giving the Hawkeyes 15 points off the bench, well ahead of his 4.5 average per game.



    Daniel Ochefu didn't have to score to make an impact. He had only six points in the win but added 11 rebounds, four assists, three steals and three blocks as a force in the post.


    Next Round

    Villanova advances to its first Sweet 16 since 2009, where it will take on No. 3 Miami, a team that turned a lot of heads in its second-round win over Wichita State.


    -Update by Rob Goldberg

No. 6 Notre Dame 76, No. 14 Stephen F. Austin 75

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    Elsa/Getty Images

    A Rex Pflueger tip-in with 1.5 seconds remaining gave Notre Dame the win over Cinderella hopeful Stephen F. Austin. 

    The Fighting Irish got a defensive stop while down one in the final minute, giving them a chance to take the lead with a basket. Although Demetrius Jackson's shot was unsuccessful, Pflueger was there on the third chance to get the go-ahead points. A long attempt by Clide Geffrard was unsuccessful and Notre Dame secured its spot in the Sweet 16.

    It was a back-and-forth battle between the two teams for much of the game. The lead was mostly within five points except for a brief seven-point Notre Dame lead. Stephen F. Austin came back and went up as much as five with two minutes remaining, but the Irish never gave up while becoming the fifth ACC team to reach the second weekend.

    Notre Dame had problems handling the Lumberjacks' press, but the team made 56.9 percent of its shots to stay alive and eventually secure the victory. 


    Top Performers

    Thomas Walkup dealt with foul trouble early but did everything he could for Stephen F. Austin down the stretch. He finished with 21 points, five assists and five rebounds in the narrow loss. The senior also finished the tournament going 26-of-27 from the free-throw line in two games.

    Demetrius Jackson led the way for Notre Dame with 18 points, but Zach Auguste was almost unstoppable in the post when he got the ball, totaling 16 points and 15 rebounds in the win.



    Pflueger only had two points in the game, but they represented the difference with 1.5 seconds left. He also played well on the defensive end to keep the Lumberjacks from pulling away.


    Next Round

    Notre Dame will try to build off the victory with a matchup against No. 7 Wisconsin with a trip to the Elite Eight on the line.


    -Update by Rob Goldberg

No. 2 Oklahoma 85, No. 10 VCU 81

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    Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

    After a quiet first half, Buddy Hield could not be contained after halftime. The National Player of the Year candidate scored 29 of his 36 points after intermission and carried Oklahoma to a second-round victory over VCU.

    The Sooners seemed like they would have little trouble in the early going, taking a 44-31 lead by halftime. Things still looked good up, 59-48, in the second half, but an 11-0 VCU run tied the game and the underdogs eventually took the lead on a Michael Gilmore three-pointer.

    VCU kept battling as the game progressed, hitting a total of 11 three-pointers on the night with Melvin Johnson and JeQuan Lewis combining for 45 points. However, Hield was simply unstoppable from all over the court down the stretch.

    The Rams got within three in the final minute, but the Sooners' free-throw shooting was enough to seal the win.


    Top Performers

    Hield was as good as advertised in crunch time, making seemingly every shot for the Sooners and finishing with 36 points on 11-of-20 shooting. Johnson also had a big second half, totaling 23 for VCU after scoring just five points in the first half.



    Isaiah Cousins was a big reason Oklahoma was able to get out to an early lead, scoring 12 in the first half and finishing with 15 points. 


    Next Round

    Oklahoma will travel to Anaheim to play Texas A&M in the Sweet 16.


    -Update by Rob Goldberg

No. 10 Syracuse 75, No. 15 Middle Tennessee 50

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    Charlie Riedel/Associated Press

    Middle Tennessee's Cinderella run lasted only one game, as Syracuse had no problem disposing of the No. 15 seed in Round 2.

    The Blue Raiders—who led wire-to-wire while shooting 55.9 percent in an upset win over Michigan State—struggled to figure out Syracuse's 2-3 zone and shot just 29.7 percent on Sunday, including 8-of-24 from three-point range.

    Meanwhile, the Orange pounded the ball inside against Middle Tennessee, making 55.1 percent of shots from the field and getting to the free-throw line 22 times.

    Although the Blue Raiders did show some fight while clawing back from an early deficit, the closest they would get was within one, 40-39. Syracuse immediately answered with a 21-2 run that effectively ended the game and clinched the ACC's sixth team in the Sweet 16.


    Top Performers

    Michael Gbinije bounced back from a relatively quiet first round, totaling 23 points with three assists and three steals in the win. Middle Tennessee didn't have much to be excited about offensively, but Giddy Potts did continue his great outside shooting by scoring nine points on 3-of-6 shooting from beyond the arc.



    The Blue Raiders couldn't get any easy shots inside, thanks in part to Tyler Lydon and his six blocks. He also added seven rebounds to go with his 14 points.


    Next Round

    Syracuse will get to face another double-digit seed in the Sweet 16 in the form of No. 11 Gonzaga.


    -Update by Rob Goldberg

No. 5 Maryland 73, No. 13 Hawaii 60

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    Patrick Smith/Getty Images

    Hawaii tried to battle back late, but Maryland held off the Rainbow Warriors and secured its first Sweet 16 berth since 2003.

    Despite a 1-of-18 mark from three-point range, the Terrapins pulled away during the second half. Hawaii slogged through a 1-of-17 stretch that lasted 10-plus minutes and watched a 39-36 lead become a 59-46 deficit. Stefan Jankovic halted the 23-7 run, but Maryland’s damage was done.

    The Terps connected on all 14 free throws throughout the final four minutes, including six from star guard Melo Trimble. As a team, they nailed 28 of 31 overall while limiting Hawaii to just 15 attempts from the charity stripe.

    Long-distance shooting struggles also plagued the Rainbow Warriors, who finished 4-of-19 after overcoming a 3-of-14 mark during the first-round upset of Cal.


    Top Performers

    Boosted by 13 made free throws, Trimble poured in 24 points. He also tallied eight rebounds and three assists. Diamond Stone and Rasheed Sulaimon chipped in 14 apiece for the Terps. Mike Thomas led Hawaii with 19 points and 11 boards.


    Damonte Dodd only scored two points, but he swatted five shots—including three during Hawaii’s second-half slump. He added one rebound and two assists.

    Next Round

    Maryland will challenge top-seeded Kansas for the right to earn a spot in the Elite Eight.

    -Update by David Kenyon

No. 3 Texas A&M 92, No. 11 Northern Iowa 88

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    Tom Pennington/Getty Images

    It was a collapse of epic proportions.

    Northern Iowa held a 12-point advantage with less than 40 seconds left in regulation, but Texas A&M rattled off a 14-2 run and forced overtime.

    The Panthers committed four turnovers and allowed perhaps the wildest comeback in NCAA tournament history. Additionally, they coughed up a three-point advantage during the first extra frame, and the Aggies ultimately earned a wild 92-88 win.

    Texas A&M leading scorer Danuel House started 0-of-9 from the field and didn’t hit a shot until 25 seconds remained on the clock. However, he connected on six of his next eight attempts and guided the Aggies to the Sweet 16 for only the fourth time in school history.


    Top Performers

    Jeremy Morgan set career-high totals with 36 points and 12 rebounds, while Wes Washpun recorded nine points, 10 assists and six boards. Alex Caruso’s 25 points paced Texas A&M, and House scored 22.


    Northern Iowa guard Matt Bohannon landed awkwardly—again, during the final minute—and wasn’t able to return. The broadcast noted he typically handles in-bounding responsibilities. Poor decisions from his replacements led to those four critical turnovers.

    Next Round

    Buddy Hield and Oklahoma await Texas A&M for a Sweet 16 battle in Anaheim on Thursday.


    —Update by David Kenyon

No. 7 Wisconsin 66, No. 2 Xavier 63

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    Bronson Koenig buried a game-tying triple with 11.7 seconds remaining and nailed the winner at the buzzer to give Wisconsin a 66-63 victory over Xavier.

    Though the Badgers mustered a meager 8-of-27 clip from three-point range, Koenig himself was 6-of-12. He atoned for a brutal night from standout forward Nigel Hayes, who misfired on all five long-distance attempts and had just six points.

    After Xavier gained a nine-point edge with 6:19 remaining in the second half, the Musketeers only attempted six shots and surrendered a 17-5 run to end the game.

    Wisconsin earned its third straight Sweet 16 appearance and fifth in the last six years.


    Top Performers

    Koenig registered 20 points and seven rebounds. Ethan Happ notched 18 points and seven boards for the Badgers, who won the battle on the glass 37-30. Jalen Reynolds and Remy Abell each scored 13 to lead Xavier.


    The Musketeers had a potential game-winning possession after Koenig’s first clutch shot, but Zak Showalter took a charge and gave his teammate a chance for heroics.

    Next Round

    Wisconsin travels to Philadelphia and will test sixth-seeded Notre Dame on Friday night.

    -Update by David Kenyon

No. 1 Oregon 69, No. 8 Saint Joseph's 64

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    Dillon Brooks' corner three gave Oregon a lead it wouldn’t relinquish in grabbing a 69-64 victory over St. Joe's.

    The Ducks never trailed en route to building a 45-35 edge, but the Hawks amassed a 23-6 run and snatched the lead. Oregon was able to recover and eventually seal the victory thanks to a steal with nine seconds remaining.

    DeAndre' Bembry, who was an integral part of St. Joe's nearly pulling off the upset, failed to attempt a game-tying shot because he over-dribbled and lost the ball.

    Two free throws helped Oregon wrap up the triumph in a fitting end to the contest. The Ducks were 21-of-25 from the charity stripe.


    Top Performers

    Brooks racked up a game-best 25 points, aided by a 4-of-7 clip from long distance. Oregon forward Elgin Cook totaled 18 points and a game-high four assists. Bembry guided the Hawks with 16 points and 12 rebounds.


    Tyler Dorsey hit a layup to tie the game at 58, a three-pointer for a 61-60 Oregon edge, jumped on Bembry’s turnover and iced the win at the free-throw line. The freshman guard tallied 14 points and seven boards.

    Next Round

    A Thursday night tilt against Duke stands in the way of the Ducks securing the program's first Elite Eight bid since 2007.


    -Update by David Kenyon

No. 3 Miami 65, No. 11 Wichita State 57

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    Mark L. Baer-USA TODAY Sports

    The No. 3 Miami Hurricanes became the first team to secure a berth in the Sweet 16 with a close victory over the No. 11 Wichita State Shockers at the Dunkin' Donuts Center in Providence, Rhode Island.

    Jim Larranaga's Hurricanes were up by as much as 21 in the first half, but as expected Wichita State rallied and put pressure on the ballclub from the ACC.

    Ron Baker put the Shockers ahead for the first time with 10:29 remaining in the game, but instead of faltering and letting the experience of Wichita State take over, the veterans on the floor for Miami helped the Hurricanes respond in fine fashion.

    Sheldon McClellan contributed eight of Miami's next 10 points after Wichita State pulled into the lead, while Angel Rodriguez delivered a few daggers in the closing stages of the contest.

    Miami's victory moved the ACC's record in the tournament to 7-1.


    Top Performers

    Rodriguez scored 16 of Miami's first 25 points and then recorded its final 10 as the Hurricanes clinched a spot in the second weekend of the Big Dance. The Kansas State transfer totaled a game high of 28 points. Rodriguez became the only player this season to record over 25 points against Wichita State, per Tim Reynolds of the AP. McClellan, who began his career at Texas, added 18 in the win.



    Davon Reed blocked Rashard Kelly's layup attempt with 5:15 left in the game and scored a three-pointer on Miami's ensuing possession to put his team up by seven points. That stretch helped silence the Wichita State comeback.


    Next Round

    The Hurricanes will face the No. 2 Villanova Wildcats in Louisville, Kentucky, on Thursday night.


    Update by Joe Tansey 

No. 4 Duke 71, No. 12 Yale 64

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    Jim Rogash/Getty Images

    The No. 4-seeded Duke Blue Devils survived a ferocious comeback from the 12th-seeded Yale Bulldogs and advanced to the Sweet 16 with their second win of the season over the Bulldogs on Saturday at the Dunkin' Donuts Center. 

    Duke shot 9-of-15 from three-point range in the first half and went into the locker room with a 23-point advantage. 

    The Blue Devils appeared to be headed for an easy victory, but the tides began to turn after Anthony Dallier drained a triple with 15:12 left in the game. Yale used that shot as a catalyst for a 13-0 run. 

    The Ivy League champions put the young Blue Devils under pressure for the rest of the second half and forced the No. 4 seed into plenty of careless turnovers. The Bulldogs also benefited from foul trouble to Duke's most experienced players, Matt Jones and Marshall Plumlee. 

    Yale moved within three of the lead with 41 seconds left as Justin Sears tipped in a missed free throw, but the comeback effort fell short as the Bulldogs missed a few shots and the Blue Devils put the game away at the free-throw line.


    Top Performers

    Grayson Allen led all scorers with 29 points. The Duke sophomore shot 10-of-15 from the field and 5-of-7 from the three-point line. Freshman Brandon Ingram made eight of 10 foul shots en route to a 25-point performance for Duke. Brandon Sherrod led Yale with 22 in defeat. 



    Ingram and Allen were the stars for Duke, but the team received valuable minutes from Derryck Thornton and Luke Kennard while Jones and Plumlee were mired in foul trouble during Yale's comeback attempt. Kennard contributed 13 points, nine of which came from beyond the arc. 


    Next Round

    The Blue Devils are off to Anaheim, California, where they will play No. 1-seeded Oregon Ducks on Thursday night .


    Update by Joe Tansey

No. 5 Indiana 73, No. 4 Kentucky 67

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    Steven Branscombe-USA TODAY Sports

    The No. 5 Indiana Hoosiers knocked off the rival No. 4 Kentucky Wildcats in a terrific clash between storied programs at Wells Fargo Arena in Des Moines, Iowa, on Saturday. 

    The Hoosiers entered the locker room with a one-point advantage following a back-and-forth first half that was littered with whistles. 

    Indiana finally found some separation in the second half with 6:58 to go by way of a three-pointer from OG Anunoby. A jumper from Yogi Ferrell and four points from Thomas Bryant extended the Hoosiers' lead to 10 by the four-minute mark. 

    Anunoby came up big once again with 1:46 remaining as he blocked a Jamal Murray shot. The rejection turned into a slam from Bryant on the other end of the hardwood. 

    Tyler Ulis put the pressure on Indiana in the final 1:07 with eight consecutive points, but the star guard's efforts were not enough as Bryant finished off the Indiana victory with two key free throws with 10 seconds left on the clock. 


    Top Performers

    Bryant scored 17 of his 19 points in the second half for Indiana. The freshman was the leading scorer for the Hoosiers, who also received 18 points from Ferrell. Ulis and Murray combined for 43 points in defeat. No other Kentucky player recorded more than seven points. 



    Anunoby's block on Murray as time dwindled in the second half was the key play of the contest for the Hoosiers. He ended with seven points, three rebounds, three blocks and two steals. 


    Next Round

    The Hoosiers are off to Philadelphia to play top-seeded North Carolina in the East Region semifinals on Friday. 


    Update by Joe Tansey

No. 4 Iowa State 78, No. 12 Arkansas-Little Rock 61

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    Justin Edmonds/Getty Images

    Unlike the three winners before them on Saturday, the No. 4 Iowa State Cyclones sprinted out to an early lead and kept it for 40 minutes. 

    Steve Prohm's team cruised past the upset-minded No. 12 Arkansas-Little Rock Trojans on its way to the program's second Sweet 16 appearance in three years. 

    Six different Cyclones combined for 11 three-pointers, and the team as a whole only turned the ball over on four occasions against the Sun Belt champions. The dialed-in Cyclones made a total of 21 triples during their two games in Denver. 

    Iowa State's impressive performance set the tone for a deep run in the tournament. The experience-laden Cyclones fell in the Sweet 16 two years ago to the Connecticut Huskies. 


    Top Performers

    As expected, Georges Niang was the top scorer for Iowa State. Niang shot 11-of-18 from the field and scored 28 points. Matt Thomas was the only other Iowa State man in double figures as he contributed 16. 



    Deonte Burton added eight points off the bench for the Cyclones against the 30-win Trojans. Burton was 3-of-4 at the free-throw line and earned a pair of steals. 


    Next Round

    Iowa State will play at the United Center in Chicago on Friday against top-seeded Virginia.


    Update by Joe Tansey

No. 1 Virginia 77, No. 9 Butler 69

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    Chuck Burton/Associated Press

    One of the nation's best defensive teams had to ramp up its offense to outlast scrappy Butler, with the top seed from the Midwest Region advancing thanks to a 54-point second half.

    Virginia (28-7) made 16 of its first 19 shots after halftime, shooting 73.1 percent in the second half and 55.8 percent overall. And it needed every bit of offense after trailing 25-23 at the half and being unable to stop Butler's Andrew Chrabascz. He had 12 points in the first three minutes, 27 seconds of the second half before Malcolm Brogdon began guarding him and held him scoreless the rest of the way.

    With Brogdon locking down Butler's hottest player and also contributing a team-high 22 points, Virginia was able to control most of the second half and lead by nine with 2:35 to go.

    Butler (22-11) tried to mount a late rally, getting to within 72-69 with 36.8 seconds left thanks to five straight points from Roosevelt Jones, but the Bulldogs didn't score again.


    Top Performers

    Brogdon had 14 of his 22 points in the second half by going 4-of-4 from the field and 6-of-6 at the line. Anthony Gill added 19 points, 16 in the second half for the Cavaliers.

    Chrabascz finished with a season-high 25 points for Butler, making 9-of-13 shots and hitting all four of his three-pointers, while Jones had 18.



    Virginia got a combined 22 points off the bench from Marial Shayok and Mike Tobey, the duo making 9-of-14 shots. Tobey was a perfect 5-of-5 from the field.


    Next Round

    Virginia moves on to its second Sweet 16 in the last three seasons, where it will take on fourth-seeded Iowa State on Friday in Chicago.


    —Update by Brian J. Pedersen

No. 1 Kansas 73, No. 9 Connecticut 61

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    Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

    The South Region's top seed played like one throughout Saturday's win, particularly in the first half when a pair of large runs kept Connecticut from having any shot at an upset.

    Kansas (32-4) used runs of 16-0 and 19-0 to lead by as many as 24 points in the first half, holding a 44-24 edge at halftime. Connecticut (25-11) never got closer than nine in the second half. The Jayhawks shot 55.6 percent in the first half and 49.0 percent overall while holding Connecticut to 33.9 percent shooting and dominating on the glass, 44-24, reaching the Sweet 16 for the first time since 2013.

    The Huskies missed 12 straight shots at one point in the first half, going more than seven minutes without a field goal to trail 40-16. A 9-0 run pulled UConn within 50-41 with nine minutes, 35 seconds left thanks to a nearly six-minute field-goal drought from Kansas, but the Jayhawks kept the margin large enough down the stretch to avoid any concern.


    Top Performers

    Wayne Selden had 22 points and seven rebounds for Kansas while Perry Ellis added 21 points (on 9-of-12 shooting) and eight rebounds. Devonte' Graham chipped in 13 points and Landen Lucas had six points, 12 rebounds and four assists.

    Sterling Gibbs had 20 points and Rodney Purvis scored 17 for the Huskies in the losing effort.



    Kansas kept Connecticut off the boards all night, particularly on the offensive end. The Huskies had only five offensive rebounds and were beat 44-24 overall.


    Next Round

    Kansas will take on No. 5 Maryland in the Sweet 16, to be played Thursday in Louisville, Kentucky.


    —Update by Brian J. Pedersen

No. 11 Gonzaga 82, No. 3 Utah 59

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    Justin Edmonds/Getty Images

    Gonzaga might not have made the NCAA tournament had it not won the West Coast Conference tournament earlier this month. Now the Bulldogs have made it to the Sweet 16 for the second year in a row and seventh time since 1999, moving to 10-6 all time when playing as a double-digit seed.

    The Bulldogs (28-7) dominated from wire to wire, leading 44-29 at halftime and extending the edge throughout the second half. They did so with knockdown shooting and lockdown defense, forcing 13 turnovers and holding Utah (27-9) to 42.3 percent shooting.

    Gonzaga improved to 24-0 this season when scoring at least 70 points, shooting 55.7 percent overall and going 9-of-19 from three-point range. It was 8-of-12 from the perimeter in the first half.

    Utah's Jakob Poeltl had only five points, all in the first half, as he was saddled by foul trouble and unable to keep up with Gonzaga's pace. It was only his fifth game this season where he failed to score at least 10 points.


    Top Performers

    Eric McClellan was 9-of-12 from the field to finish with 22 points for Gonzaga, while Domantas Sabonis had 19 points (on 8-of-12 shooting) and 10 rebounds. Kyle Wiltjer added 17 points, making seven of 10 shots.



    Nine of Utah's 13 turnovers were in the first half. The Utes turned the ball over 53 times in their last three games, 20 apiece in the Pac-12 title game loss to Oregon and their first-round win over Fresno State.


    Next Round

    Gonzaga plays No. 10 Syracuse in the Sweet 16 on Friday in Chicago.


    —Update by Brian J. Pedersen

No. 1 North Carolina 85, No. 9 Providence 66

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    Associated Press

    North Carolina used a 29-10 run midway through the second half to coast past Providence, earning a second consecutive Sweet 16 appearance and 27th in program history.

    The game was tied at 41 with 15 minutes, 35 seconds left after a dunk by Providence's Kris Dunn, but over the next 10 minutes the Tar Heels (30-6) took control and never looked back. They were helped by near-constant foul trouble for Dunn and Ben Bentil, the latter of whom fouled out with 7:23 left.

    Providence (24-11) trailed only 34-30 at the half and briefly led at 36-34 on a steal and dunk by Dunn, who led all scorers with 29 points on 10-of-16 shooting. The Friars shot 40.4 percent but were 6-of-23 from three-point range.

    UNC shot 52.5 percent and had five players in double figures, making 17-of-28 field goals in the second half.


    Top Performers

    Brice Johnson had his 21st double-double of the season, scoring 21 points on 7-of-9 shooting along with 10 rebounds. Joel Berry and Justin Jackson had 15 points apiece, while Isaiah Hicks had 13 and Marcus Paige added 12.

    Dunn and Bentil combined for 50 of Providence's 66 points, going 17-of-33 from the field. The rest of the team was 6-of-24.



    UNC took advantage of Providence's foul issues by capitalizing at the line. The Tar Heels were 19-of-21 on free throws, making 14 consecutive during the second half.


    Next Round

    North Carolina meets fifth-seeded Indiana in the East Regional in Philadelphia on Friday.


    —Update by Brian J. Pedersen