2009 NCAA Tournament: Midwest Regional Sweet 16 Recap & Elite 8 Preview
Midwest Regional @ Lucas Oil Stadium, Indianapolis
No. 1 Louisville (31-4) 103, No. 12 Arizona (21-14) 64
Key Moment: The Cardinals never trailed and went on run to build a 21-point lead at halftime 49-28.
High Point Scorers: Louisville -- Earl Clark 19, Arizona -- Chase Budinger 22
Analysis: The Cardinals started by hitting their first three shots and never stopped. They shot 57 percent from the field and 48 percent from 3-point range. They were just too deep and talented against the Pac 10 conference's last tournament hope. Terrence Williams arguably played his best game of the tournament with six assists and only two turnovers. Louisville issued one of the largest blowout losses in tournament history. Clark continues to impress with his length. Louisville becomes the fourth Big East team to reach a regional final.
No. 2 Michigan State (29-6) 67, No. 3 Kansas (27-8) 62
Key Moment: The Spartans closed the game with a 12-2 run. Point guard Kalin Lucas' 3-point play with 48.1 seconds to play broke a 60-60 tie.
High Point Scorers: Michigan State -- Goran Suton 20 Kansas -- Sherron Collins 20
Analysis: Best game of the Sweet 16. This turned out to be the tug-of-war that many expected. Michigan State held its composure when it trailed 32-19 late in the first half. A 10-4 run to close the half narrowed the Jayhawks' lead to 36-29. But the game became manageable. The defending national champions got their usual great games from Collins and Cole Aldrich (17 points, 14 rebounds). Much like their win over USC, the Spartans suffocated the opponent and made key plays in the final minutes. Credit Suton for a huge game.
Midwest Regional Final - No. 1 Louisville vs. No. 2 Michigan State
Early Take: It's pretty clear that Michigan State is going to have to make this a half-court game. Louisville's depth and trapping defense is going to make life difficult for Lucas to run the offense. But if he can break the initial press, the Spartans can then run it. But the Cardinals present too many matchup problems between Clark, Samuels and Williams. If the Spartans' low block game can't get them out of rhythm, then it's going to be a long night. Despite a great season by the Big Ten regular season champions, the Big East regular season and tournament champions won't be stopped.
By Kevin Lonnquist
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