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NCAA Tournament: Loyola's improbable run continues


The rout was on by halftime with MI leading 52-28.

The Loyola-Chicago Ramblers will look to keep their Cinderella run going to San Antonio after taking down Nevada by a final score of 69-68 in the regional semifinal on Thursday.

With Loyola-Chicago clinging to a one-point lead and only 6.3 seconds remaining, Marques Townes sank a 3-pointer from in front of the Ramblers' bench to continue their improbable NCAA Tournament run. It's a different star every night, and even at that, no Seminole has scored more than 18 points in a game since the regular season ended. But with the 6-foot-9 center viewed as a likely first-round pick, Williams may have played his final game in a Texas A&M uniform.

Nevada's experience in second-half comebacks paid off. Townes hit the big shot to clinch it.

Loyola is being cheered on in the regional semifinals by four members of its 1963 national championship team.

The Ramblers got off to a slow start, trailing 20-8 at one point in the first half. Their 12-game winning streak is their longest since they won their first 16 in 2013, the last time they reached the Final Four. Loyola-Chicago opened its tournament with a game-winning buzzer-beating three-pointer from Donte Ingram that downed 6-seed Miami 64-62. Not only does it have a championship on its resume, it played in one of the most socially significant games in college basketball history during its run to the title.

Duke captured third place by whipping Oregon State 85-63 as Player of the Year Art Heyman closed out his Blue Devil career with 22 points and a brilliant floor game.

The rout is on at the West Region in Los Angeles.

MI 99, TEXAS A&M 72LOS ANGELES - This one was easy.


The Duke great also came up with the play of the ragged game, scoring an easy layup in the second half after bouncing the ball through an Oregon State defender's legs and grabbing it on the other side without once breaking stride.

Moe Wagner scored 14 points and Duncan Robinson added 10 for MI.

Martin led Nevada (29-8) with 21 points. The Wolverines had eight steals, led by Zavier Simpson with five.

Loyola-Chicago has won its three NCAA Tournament games this month by a combined four points.

This time, however, Nevada couldn't regain the lead.

After the half, Loyola literally couldn't miss. The Ramblers forced six turnovers by halftime, held Nevada to 33.3 percent shooting on 27 attempts, and held the Wolfpack scoreless for the final seven minutes and 55 seconds of the opening half. Junior forward Cody Martin had 16 points and sophomore guard Josh Hall scored 10 for Nevada, which shot just 41.4 percent from the field.

Loyola pushed the ball in the paint on nearly every possession. Loyola continued to battle on its home court, quickly coming back with a 5-1 spurt to take a 20-18 lead.

On display for the Ramblers will be Clayton Custer, the aforementioned Missouri Valley Conference Player of the Year. Loyola-Chicago, the 11th seed, defeated Nevada in the last round.

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