Providence College Friars Headed To Big East Finals After Miracle Comeback

Vols' NCAA Tournament History By the Numbers

Villanova: The Wildcats are the best in the Big East.

Providence: The Friars are headed to their fifth straight NCAA Tournament. The NCAA Selection Show is scheduled for tomorrow [Sunday, March 11] on TBS and is slated to begin at 6:00 p.m. (ET).

The Friars won this one because the seniors stepped up along with sophomore Alpha Diallo. The double-double is Diallo's sixth of the season, which leads the Friars. Kaiser Gates also provided a spark for the top seed by making six of his seven shots off the bench en route to 16 points.

Despite holding the lead, the 'Cats had gone ice cold at this point shooting just 3 of 10 on their last ten field goal attempts before half.

For the third-straight day at the BIG EAST Tournament, Providence went into overtime, tied this time, with Villanova at 60. Providence is the second team in Big East Tournament history to win back-to-back overtime games. With 12 points and 12 rebounds, Omari Spellman put together a good game for Villanova.

Jalen Brunson with the first four points for Villanova. There was one minute to play as the Friars prepared to inbound the basketball in tied game. Bridges spearheaded the effort with 25 points, eight rebounds and four assists, while Brunson added 21 points and three assists.

That's when Cartwright and the Friars made their move.

So far, this year's conference tournaments have brought players who delight, such as Alabama's eccentric young point guard, Collin Sexton, and players who enrage, such as Duke's controversy magnet, Grayson Allen. Wideman added 10 points, none more important than the final two, and Butler overcame an abysmal 6-of-26 mark from three-point range. Brunson continued his strong play throughout the game, finishing with a team leading 31 points.

In a game that will help pad his case for national player of the year, Brunson was an ice-cold assassin for Villanova (30-4).

Unlike the earlier two games, freshman forward Dhamir Cosby-Roundtree played early rotation minutes absent of any foul-trouble from a starter. His free throw gave Providence its first lead of the game.

Villanova won the game 76-66 in overtime.

Cartwright's last second shot, however, went long sending the game to overtime.

In overtime, Brunson and fellow Villanova superstar Mikal Bridges took over. Providence calls timeout. 9-2 Villanova.

The moment was not too big for an experienced Providence squad as the Friars fought back early, tying the game at eleven behind an all-around effort from sophomore guard Alpha Diallo, who, by the time the game was tied at the 11:30 mark, had six points on a flawless 3-3 shooting, three rebounds and an assist. I wanted it back right when I let it go, I just felt it was a little short and I didn't really give it a chance. Diallo would miss his intial shot, but his stickback with 12.9 left tied the game. But 10 seconds after Brunson extended the Wildcat lead to 39-27, Bullock answered with a three-pointer to pull Providence back to within single digits.

On the Wildcats' next possession, Brunson rolled off a screen and converted a 15-foot jumper, extending the lead to 62-38.

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