Sports Updates every 20 minutes
Weekday mornings and afternoons
Basketball Bucksline: Mondays 7-8 p.m.
Sunday Morning Sports Talk: 9 a.m.-noon
Crew fans get more on your favorite team
By Matt McCoy
The circumstances were not exactly the same...but Aaron Craft's 3-pointer to beat Iowa State 78-75 Sunday sure did bring about memories.
In the same round of the 2007 NCAA tournament, Ohio State needed a 3-point hero to survive against Xavier, and Ron Lewis stepped up. Lewis' three tied the game, which the Buckeyes then went on to win in overtime. Craft's was the ultimate dagger, ending the game and sending the Buckeyes into the Sweet 16 for a fourth consecutive year. No other team in America can say that.
"That's something I'm very proud of," Thad Matta said. "You look at how hard that is to do...I'm happy for the University, I'm happy for us because that's a great statement in college basketball."
Ohio State moves on to face Arizona in West Regional semifinals. The Wildcats are coached by one of Matta's closest friends, Sean Miller, who was an assistant under Matta at Xavier. When Matta went to Ohio State, Miller took over at X and was the coach who had to endure the heartbreak of Lewis' 2007 shot.
"He's done a tremendous job out there," Matta said of Miller, who took over at Arizona in 2009. "He's great coach, he's a great friend and I'm excited to play him. He sent me a text (Saturday night) saying 'I'm waiting for you in L.A.' so it'll be fun."
If you're a Buckeye fan, it's always fun to relive great moments. Here's Craft's game winner and also Lewis' from 2007.
Craft discusses 'The Shot'
Sportsrappup.com and 610 WTVN's Jeff Rapp was in Dayton and had a chance to talk breifly with Craft about the final play.
"It was a changeable play with multiple options," Craft said. "Obviously (Deshaun Thomas) was one of the first ones (we were looking for) coming off a couple screens. They switched the first ball screen and the big guy came on me so I thought I could take advantage. I took a shot right before and I knew I was going to have space so I was able to knock it down."
Craft's shot came after a rough stretch for the reliable point guard. He had missed the front end of two 1-and-1 free throw opportunities, had an unforced turnover and an off the ball foul that gave Iowa State two free throws. The mistakes helped Iowa State rally from a 13 point deficit, but for Craft and the Buckeyes, alls well that ends well.
"My teammates did a great job believing in me," Craft said. "I just tried to stay poised and stay focused and came out on top."
To listen to Craft's interview with Jeff click HERE
Jeff also was in the mob of reporters who spoke with Thad Matta following the game. To listen to Coach Matta's comments, click HERE: