AP Sports

Terrence Shannon Jr. leads Illinois past Iowa State 72-69 for first Elite Eight trip since 2005

BOSTON (AP) — Terrence Shannon Jr. scored 29 points and Illinois reached the Elite Eight for the first time since 2005, beating Iowa State 72-69 in an East Region semifinal on Thursday night.

Shannon had 20 points in the first half for the third-seeded Illini (29-8), who never trailed. He broke away for a dunk in the closing seconds and later hit two free throws to help Illinois finally put away the second-seeded Cyclones (29-8).

Illinois made a regional final for the fourth time in the past 40 years and will meet defending champion UConn on Saturday for a trip to the Final Four. The top-seeded Huskies defeated San Diego State 82-52 in the earlier East semifinal.

Curtis Jones scored 26 points to lead Iowa State, which came into March Madness having blown out Houston for the Big 12 Tournament title.

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AP March Madness bracket: https://apnews.com/hub/ncaa-mens-bracket and coverage: https://apnews.com/hub/march-madness

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