C.J. Fair scored 15 points and Scoop Jardine added 14 as the Syracuse Orange fended off the Wisconsin Badgers, 64-63, to advance to the Elite Eight.
Syracuse returned to the Elite Eighth for the first time since winning the national title in 2003 as C.J Fair finally overcame his shooting slump to help the Orange escape with the victory against the resilient Badgers in their Sweet Sixteen duel.
Averaging 3.0 points on 1-for-10 shooting in the first two rounds of the tournament, Fair was efficient, shooting 7-for-9 from the field and recording 7 boards and 4 steals.
The Orange also got quality minutes from Scoop Jardine (14 points), Brandon Triche (11 points), and Dion Waters (13 points), who have played extremely well off the bench in the tourney.
After grinding out a 33-27 lead at the break, the Orange continued to struggle with the Badgers and subsequently had just a three-point lead, 56-53, with 7:57 left to play.
However, the Orange responded with a run of their own as they took back the lead, 64-61 with 3:50 remaining on the clock.
The Badgers moved within a point, 64-63, on a free-throw by Josh Gasser and then forced a missed shot on the other end of the floor. But Jordan Taylor bungled a three-point shot and Gasser missed a follow-up layup as time expired.
Taylor and Jared Berggren recorded 17 points each, while Ben Brust added 9 off the bench for the No.4 seed Badgers.
Syracuse will next take on Ohio State, which annihilated Cincinnati, 81-66, to book their place in the Elite 8.
Syracuse Edges Wisconsin, Orange in Elite Eight
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