March Madness: No. 15 Princeton upsets No. 2 Arizona in a 59-55 win
No. 15 Princeton stunned No. 2 Arizona with a 59-55 first-round triumph in the South Provincial on Thursday.
Caden Pierce made two free throws with 17 seconds left and Tosan Iwboomwan made a free throw with three seconds left to ice the game for the Tigers.
Courtney Ramey and Kerr Chrissa missed game-tying 3s for the Wildcats between trips to the line as Arizona went through an incredibly long scoring struggle.
This is the third straight year a No. 15 seed has knocked off a No. 2 seed in the men's NCAA Competition St. Peter's crushed Kentucky
during its impossible hurry to the Tiptop Eight out of 2022, and Oral Roberts crushed Ohio State in the 2021 competition.
Ramey put Arizona up 49-39 with 11 minutes to play and it appeared the Wildcats could keep Princeton at bay for the win.
That idea was based on the belief that Arizona could make baskets at a decent rate.
That didn't happen. The Wildcats scored just six points and committed six turnovers in the game's final 11 minutes. Each of the three crates in the last 11 minutes was layups.
Arizona went cold from anywhere outside the lane and allowed Princeton to claw their way back into the game.
Princeton didn't shoot the ball well either. The conventional recipe for irritation in the NCAA Competition is for the lower-cultivated group to shoot better from 3.
Princeton was only 4-of-25 from behind the bend. That fourth triple came at 6:29 from Blake Peters and cut Arizona's lead to 51-48.
Princeton took its first lead of the game at 2:03 when Ryan Langborg drove to the basket and scored. That basket was bookended by an Arizona turnover.
Azzuolas Tubelis was robbed to set up two for Langborg to go ahead, and then Krissa turned it over after a jump ball.
Arizona had six opportunities to start to lead the pack in the last two minutes. The Wildcats missed five shots and serious two turnovers.
While Princeton made only four 3s, Arizona made only three. The Wildcats were 3-of-16 from profound, meaning the two groups joined to shoot 7-of-41 from 3.
Yet they both shot over 40% from the field, thanks to their made baskets at the rim.
Princeton will play No. 7 seed Missouri on Saturday. The Tigers defeated No. 10 Utah State to acquire the school's most memorable NCAA Competition win starting around 2010.
The champ will progress to Sweet 16.