4:40 PM ET, March 26, 2005
The Pit, Albuquerque, New Mexico
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) -- The master motivator himself, Louisville coach Rick Pitino, admitted he was lying when he told his players at halftime he was sure they were going to beat West Virginia.That's because Louisville's trip to the Final Four looked like a lost cause thanks to the Mountaineers' hotshot shooters. Almost every road to a championship takes at least one unexpected twist, though, and none was more astonishing than the second-half rally the Cardinals staged Saturday to earn a 93-85 overtime win and a trip to college basketball's biggest stage.
|*Won national title|
|• Providence (1987) -- lost to Syracuse 77-63 in semifinals.|
|• Kentucky (1993) -- lost to Michigan 81-78, OT in semifinals.|
|• Kentucky (1996) -- beat Massachusetts 81-74 in semifinals; beat Syracuse 76-67 for championship.|
|• Kentucky (1997) -- beat Minnesota 78-69 in semifinals; lost to Arizona 84-79, OT for championship.|
|• Louisville (2005) -- vs. Illinois in semifinals.|
The 33 wins match Louisville's high for a season. The Cardinals won 33 en route to the national title in 1980. ... The last No. 4 seed to advance to the Final Four was Ohio State in 1999. ... West Virginia was trying to become the highest-seeded team to make the Final Four since LSU (11th) in 1986.
Team Stat Comparison
|FG Made-Attempted||26-47 (.553)||32-58 (.552)|
|3P Made-Attempted||18-27 (.667)||11-28 (.393)|
|FT Made-Attempted||15-19 (.789)||18-29 (.621)|
|Fouls (Tech/Flagrant)||19 (0/0)||18 (0/0)|
|» Mar 26, 2005||@LOU 93, WVU 85||Recap|