Louisville in Final 4 With Win Over Florida
Rick Pitino nearly loses it in win over protege Billy Donovan
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Mar 24, 2012 6:25 PM CDT
Louisville head coach Rick Pitino reacts as his team plays Florida during the first half of an NCAA tournament West Regional final college basketball game, Saturday, March 24, 2012, in Phoenix.    (Chris Carlson)
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(Newser) – Hated to do that to ya, kid. Rick Pitino nearly came unhinged and his point guard watched the end of the game from the bench. When it was over, though, it was Pitino and Louisville making plans for the Final Four and his protege, Billy Donovan, and the Florida Gators wondering what the heck happened. Chane Behanan made the go-ahead basket with 1:04 left today and the fourth-seeded Cardinals finished the game on a 23-8 run for a 72-68 victory over Donovan's stunned Florida team in the West Regional final.

Russ Smith followed Behanan's bucket with a pair of free throws and then Florida freshman Bradley Beal and teammate Kenny Boynton each missed chances to tie. Louisville made one more free throw to seal the game and reach its ninth Final Four despite playing the final 3:58 without point guard Peyton Siva, who fouled out. Florida (26-11) went out in the regional final for the second straight year, with Donovan falling to 0-7 lifetime against the man who coached him at Providence, hired him as an assistant at Kentucky, and felt as proud as a papa when he watched Donovan win his two national titles in 2006 and 2007.
 

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