It took the Xavier Musketeers until there were 21 seconds remaining in the game to take their first lead of the second half, but they wouldn't relinquish it. They're moving on in the NCAA Tournament with a 67-63 win over the Notre Dame Fighting Irish.
Xavier did everything they could to throw the game away, but Notre Dame's late mistakes were even worse. They quite literally 'threw' the game away.
That turnover came just after Mark Lyons made a layup for Xavier to cut Notre Dame's lead to 63-62 with 42 seconds remaining. On the ensuing possession, Tu Holloway made a fantastic fadeaway pull-up jump shot off of the backboard to give his team the lead for good.
The last 21 seconds were an absolute mess. Jerian Grant took a three-point shot for Notre Dame to try to put his team ahead, but he missed. Dezmine Wells grabbed the rebound and went to the free throw line, but only made one, giving Notre Dame a chance to win the game. With two seconds left, Dee Davis inexplicably committed a foul that sent Eric Atkins to the line for a one-and one.
Atkins wouldn't have a chance to make the free throws and force overtime. On the front end of the one-and-one, Notre Dame was called for a lane violation, which turned the ball back over to Xavier. Much like Thursday's crucial lane violation call in the Syracuse - UNC Asheville game, it was technically correct. Also much like that call, the officials were nitpicking and chose to blow the whistle on something that happens on nearly every free throw attempt.
Wells went on to get fouled, then make two free throws to ice the game for Xavier. They're moving on to face Lehigh, who pulled off a massive upset over Duke earlier in the night.
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