OR beats Kansas 74-60 to punch Final Four ticket

- Kansas basketball lost to No. 3 seed and ninth-ranked OR, 74-60, in the NCAA Championship Midwest Regional Final on Saturday at Sprint Center.

Sabrina Ionescu scored 21 points, fellow freshman Ruthy Hebard had 16 and the 10th-seeded Ducks continued their improbable run through the NCAA Tournament with a 77-63 victory over Maryland on Saturday.

"It's a home game for them", said Tyler Dorsey, who scored 20 points and the game-winning basket for OR in the Ducks' Sweet 16 win over MI.

Luke Maye hit a jumper with 0.3 seconds left, and top-seeded North Carolina held off Kentucky 75-73 to earn the Tar Heels' second straight trip to the Final Four and 20th all-time in Sunday's showdown of college basketball's elite in the South Regional.

The Oregon Ducks are going to the Final Four.

Joining Oregon in the Final Four is Gonzaga, which trounced Xavier 83-59 in the West Regional championship. And then it wasn't really a Final Four.

If this trio of players can play anything like they did on Saturday night, OR is going to be incredibly hard to beat. Graham had made at least four 3s in each tournament game, one of only four players to ever achieve that, according to ESPN Stats & Information. This led many people (including yours truly) to pick Oregon as a chic upset victim in the second round to Rhode Island. Oregon wouldn't be the same without Boucher. Devonte Graham, fresh off a scintillating 26 points against Purdue, went 0 for 7. Jackson finished with 10 points and 12 rebounds.

Jordan Bell had eight blocks and his second double double with 11 points and 13 rebounds.

Tyler Dorsey also continued his hot tournament with 27 points, and Pac-12 Player of the Year Dillon Brooks finished with 17 to pace OR offensively.

In what might have been the key possession of the game, OR ran down the shot clock before Dorsey put up a 3-point attempt just before the buzzer. The Ducks were on fire from three-point range (11-of-25) and dominated the glass most of the game. Even worse, Jackson's struggles extended into the start of the second half as well as Oregon's lead only increased.

"We shot it pretty quick", Kansas coach Bill Self said. A title would do that, and it's just two games away. KU has thrived on the comeback victory this season, pulling off some remarkable turnarounds, but Bell scared the Jayhawks into bad shots all night long. Defensively, Kansas is allowing 72.4 points against the opposing teams.

Kansas looks like the best team in the country through three games in the tournament.

It was a balanced attack for OR with five players in double figures scoring, including Oti Gildon who pulled down 9 rebounds to go along with her 11 points. There were also just unlucky shots. Dillon Brooks and Tyler Dorsey may receive all the fanfare, but Bell is not far behind.

Slaughter made 1-of-2 free throws with 3:41 left before Sydney Wiese missed yet another three-point try on the other end during a tough day from deep, and Slaughter scored again to help extend her special senior season. If the Ducks win on Saturday, the team will play on April 3rd to try and win its first national title since 1939.

  • Julie Sanders