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UK Advances to Final Four After Notre Dame White-Knuckler [VIDEO]

Gregory Shamus/Getty Images

As a college basketball fan, it doesn’t get any better than the 2015 Elite Eight game between Kentucky and Notre Dame. It doesn’t.

That’s the kind of thing I want to see in March. And I got it.

20 lead changes! 12 ties!

And the ‘Cats got their 38th win of the season–a 68-66 breathtaking thriller of a victory over, arguably, the best team they’ve faced all year.

I’ve been watching college hoops a long time and I’ve never seen a Notre Dame team as good as this one.

(I wasn’t watching when the Fighting Irish ended UCLA’s historic 88-game winning streak in the early 70s.)

This was a wildly important game for the ‘Cats. To be down most of the second half against a terrific group like Notre Dame and pull out the victory is a special accomplishment.

Karl-Anthony Towns had 25 points and Andrew Harrison put up the two free throws that would seal the deal for UK.

And yet my lasting impression of this extraordinary instant classic will be 7-footer Willie Cauley-Stein racing alongside Notre Dame guard Jerian Grant as he ran nearly 94 feet, lightning quick, to try to win it for the Irish.

Cauley-Stein was toe-to-toe with Grant to make absolute certain that whatever shot went up was altered.

Instead, Grant met a Wildcat triple-team. The shot was no good.

And Kentucky is in the Final Four.

It’s a shame someone had to lose this game. Amazing stuff.

For a flawless encapsulation of the game from ESPN’s Eamonn Brennan, click here.

For highlights and the Midwest Region championship trophy presentation, look below:

 

 

 

 

Kentucky will face Wisconsin next Saturday night at the Final Four in Indianapolis.

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