Pitt, UConn Advance
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Mar 26, 2009 9:34 PM CDT
Pittsburgh guard Levance Fields reacts after stealing the ball and scoring against Xavier late in the game.   (AP Photo/Winslow Townson)
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(Newser) – For Pitt and UConn, it's on to the Elite Eight. Pitt had the tougher fight, edging Xavier 60-55 to reach the regional finals for the first time in 35 years. Levance Fields gave Pitt the lead with a 3-pointer with 50.9 seconds left, then scored off his own steal. The top-seeded Panthers trailed 54-52 before its point guard connected on that 3-pointer.

Connecticut, which found itself in trouble for the first time in the tournament, overcame a sluggish first half to defeat Purdue 72-60. Hasheem Thabeet, the Big East player of the year, scored 15 points, and added 15 rebounds and blocked four shots to lead the top-ranked Huskies.