Loyola will try to book its first trip to the Final Four in 55 years with an Elite 8 matchup against Kansas State at 5:09 p.m. CT Saturday. The game between the 11th-seeded Ramblers and ninth-seeded Wildcats may be a surprise to most who filled out brackets this year, but it ensures that one fan base is going to be bursting with joy by the end of the weekend.
The Ramblers have already put together a Cinderella story for the ages by winning three thrilling games to reach the Elite 8. The team beat sixth-seeded Miami (Fla.) and third-seeded Tennessee in the first two rounds, then stunned seventh-seeded Nevada with another close game in the Sweet 16. Those three victories came by a combined margin of four points.
Porter Moser’s team has shown a remarkable amount of resiliency, including successfully withstanding a late run by the Wolf Pack in their last game. The Ramblers came out firing in the second half by hitting their first 13 shots, then needed to respond late after Nevada found its footing and rallied in the final minutes.
Aundre Jackson hit a huge three inside the final three minutes after Nevada had tied the game, 59-59, then Marques Townes put it away by hitting another three with less than six seconds on the clock.
Kansas State may not be the incredible story that Loyola is, but Bruce Weber’s latest trip to the Elite 8 is still impressive. The Wildcats toppled fifth-seeded Kentucky in the Sweet 16 to earn their spot and could become the first Weber-coached team to reach the Final Four since Illinois lost in the 2005 national title game.
How to watch Loyola vs. Kansas State, 2018 NCAA Tournament
Time: 5:09 p.m. CT
Live stream: NCAA.com