Texas guard Marcus Carr opened the scoring against Xavier with a jumper 17 seconds into Friday’s Sweet 16 contest.
And the Longhorns would never relinquish that lead.
No. 2 Texas secured a wire-to-wire 83-71 win over No. 3 Xavier in the Midwest regional semifinals at the T-Mobile Center in Kansas City, Missouri. The victory sent the Longhorns to their first Elite Eight since 2008.
Texas will face the No. 5 Miami Hurricanes, who sent No. 1 Houston packing in the Sweet 16, on Sunday with a trip to the Final Four on the line. The Longhorns last made the Final Four in 2003.
Texas ripped off a 20-9 run in the final six-plus minutes of the opening half against Xavier to take a 17-point halftime advantage and seize control of the contest.
The Musketeers would only get as close as 12 in the second half, while the Longhorns stretched their lead to as many as 24.
Tyrese Hunter, who tallied 19 points, led five players who scored in double figures for a Texas offense that shot a blistering 52.5% from the field and 7-for-12 from 3 (58.3%). Carr added 18 points and six assists.
Christian Bishop (18 points) and Sir’Jabari Rice (16 points) combined for 34 points off the bench. Texas’ bench outscored Xavier’s 35-3. Hunter, Carr, Bishop, Rice and Timmy Allen, who scored 11, combined for 82 of the Longhorns’ 83 points.
Adam Kunkel paced the Musketeers with 21 points while making five of six shots from 3-point range.
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