Louisville, Oklahoma dominate
It was blowout city in the first two regional semifinal games Friday night.
Louisville showed why it is a #1 seed and Rick Pitino moved a step closer to his sixth trip to the Final Four as the Cardinals rolled past Arizona. Louisville's 103 points was the school's great offensive performance in an NCAA tournament game.
The Cardinals showed great balance while playing with passion and emotion. Arizona's lack of depth was evident as Louisville was simply too good.
Chase Budinger tried to keep the Wildcats in the game, scoring 14 of his team's 28 points in the first half.
Pitino's teams seems to raise their level in the postseason. In the Big East tournament and the big dance, Louisville is holding opponents to 61 points per game.
I remember seeing Earl Clark struggle against Connecticut when I called their game at Freedom Hall. Clark has been a different player since shooting two-for-16 in that contest. He has scored in double figures in 15 straight outings.
Louisville has won 13 straight games entering the regional final. The Cardinals had 29 assists on 38 made baskets against Arizona.
Arizona proved in belonged in the tournament by making the Sweet 16. The Wildcats ran into a buzz saw on Friday night.
Then there was Oklahoma. The Sooners raced out to a 12-4 lead en route to a big victory over Syracuse. The Orange loss kept Jim Boeheim away from his 800th career W.
The Orange simply couldn't make shots early as Andy Rautins and Eric Devendorf struggled big-time from long range.
Oklahoma's intensity and emotion shined through. The Sooners put the game away for good with a solid start in the second half.
Blake Griffin showed why he should be national Player of the Year with another 30-point performance.
Jeff Capel moved a step closer to joining a select group -- men who played and coached in the Final Four. The names include Robert Montgomery Knight, Dean Smith and Billy Donovan among others. If the Sooners win Sunday, you can add Capel to that list.
On Friday night, Louisville and Oklahoma looked super, scintillating, sensational!
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