No. 12 Cardinals hold off Mountaineers in double-OT
New York, NY (Sports Network) – Terrence Williams scored 21 points and pulled
down nine rebounds, as 12th-ranked Louisville beat West Virginia, 82-71, in
double-overtime in the quarterfinals of the Big East Tournament.
Earl Clark added 17 points for the Cardinals (23-8), who will face either
Marquette or Pittsburgh in Friday’s semifinals. David Padgett ended with 16
points for Louisville, which blew a 17-point lead in the second half, only to
get a layup from Edgar Sosa at the regulation buzzer.
Brandon Jenkins chipped in 11 points, as the second-seeded Cardinals won their
seventh straight contest. They also snapped a nine-game skid at Madison Square
Garden, winning a contest at the “World’s Most Famous Arena” for the first
time since January 5, 1984 versus Iona.
“Our guys were risk takers, we weren’t afraid to fail, we took big shots,”
Louisville coach Rick Pitino said. “The guys were very much at ease and had no
fear of failure.”
Frank Young had 19 points and Da’Sean Butler 17 for the Mountaineers (22-9),
who beat Providence, 92-79, on Wednesday night.
We just came out, I don’t know if it was fatigue from last night, but it took
us a while to get our second wind,” West Virginia coach John Beilein said.
“But we came out and did not play well to start.”
Williams and Clark each hit layups to start the second OT, and Padgett’s layup
boosted Louisville to a 72-66 advantage. Clark then buried a three-pointer for
a 75-66 margin with under 1 1/2 minutes remaining.
Ahead 35-27 at the intermission, the Cardinals scored the opening nine points
of the second half. Clark’s jumper just inside of 17 minutes left boosted
Louisville to a 44-27 advantage.
However, the Mountaineers buckled down defensively and held Louisville without
a point over nearly the next nine minutes. During that time, West Virginia
scored 18 points, grabbing a 45-44 edge on Nichols’ layup with nine minutes
Padgett’s layup put the Cardinals back on top 46-45 and it remained a see-saw
battle. Nichols hit a shot high off the backboard with 4.3 seconds remaining
for a 58-56 West Virginia lead, but Sosa then split defender and drove to the
hole to tie the game.
Nichols hit two free throws with 21.2 seconds left in the first OT to tie the
game at 66, and Williams missed the potential winning shot for Louisville at
the buzzer to end the first extra session.
These two teams did not meet during the regular season…Jamie Smalligan had
13 points for WVU.