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First Published Mar 24 2014 09:10 am • Last Updated Mar 25 2014 04:17 pm

KENTUCKY 78, WICHITA STATE 76

ST. LOUIS • Andrew Harrison scored 20 points, twin brother Aaron had 19 and Kentucky ended Wichita State’s pursuit of perfection Sunday when Fred VanVleet’s potential game-winning 3-pointer missed in a 78-76 victory in the NCAA tournament.

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Julius Randle had 13 points and 10 rebounds, and James Young also had 13 points for the No. 8 seed Wildcats (26-10), who made a series of clutch free throws in the final minutes to hold off the top-seeded Shockers in arguably the most captivating game of a thrilling first weekend.

Kentucky will play in-state rival Louisville in the Sweet 16 on Friday in Indianapolis.

Cleanthony Early scored 31 points and Ron Baker had 20 for the Shockers (35-1), who hadn’t lost since last year’s Final Four.

TENNESSEE 83, MERCER 63

RALEIGH, N.C. • Jarnell Stokes had 17 points and a career-high-tying 18 rebounds, and Tennessee denied Mercer a second straight upset in the NCAA tournament.

Josh Richardson had a career-high 26 points and Antonio Barton added 18 for the 11th-seeded Vols (24-12), who outrebounded Mercer 41-19 and kept the Southeastern Conference perfect in the tournament.

They joined Florida and Kentucky in the round of 16 — the first time three SEC teams made it that far since 2007.


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Tennessee will face second-seeded Michigan (27-8) in a Midwest Regional semifinal Friday night in Indianapolis.

Langston Hall had 15 points to lead the 14th-seeded Bears (27-9), who beat Duke in the signature upset of the tournament but couldn’t answer Tennessee’s size.

EAST REGION

IOWA ST. 85, NORTH CAROLINA 83

SAN ANTONIO • DeAndre Kane drove for the game-winning layup with 1.6 seconds left and No. 3 seed Iowa State advanced to the Sweet 16 for the first time since 2000.

The Cyclones (28-7) head to Madison Square Garden next week to face No. 7 seed Connecticut in the East Regional semifinals.

The Tar Heels (24-10) are gone in the NCAA tournament’s opening weekend for the first time in consecutive seasons under coach Roy Williams.

North Carolina’s Nate Britt raced the ball up court after Kane’s basket, but time expired before he could reach halfcourt and call a timeout. Officials huddled for several minutes reviewing clock replays before ruling the game was over.

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