Shockers end NCAA run with loss to Notre Dame in Sweet 16

Wichita State coach Gregg Marshall reacts in the first half of a college basketball game against Notre Dame in the NCAA men's tournament regional semifinals, Thursday, March 26, 2015, in Cleveland. Notre Dame's Steve Vasturia is at left. (AP Photo/David Richard)

CLEVELAND (AP) – Notre Dame’s march through March is picking up speed.

Demetrius Jackson scored 20 points and the third-seeded Irish dominated Wichita State 81-70 in the Midwest regional semifinals on Thursday night to advance to the Elite Eight for the first time in 36 years.

The Irish (32-5) shot 75 percent (18 of 24) in the second half, easily pulling away from the seventh-seeded Shockers (30-5) after Wichita State took its first and only lead on a layup by Darius Carter early in the second half. Pat Connaughton added 16 points and 10 rebounds for Notre Dame and Jerian Grant had nine points and 11 assists.

Notre Dame will play either unbeaten Kentucky or West Virginia on Saturday night with a Final Four spot on the line.

Fred VanVleet led Wichita State with 25 points but the Shockers simply couldn’t keep up with the sharp-shooting Irish.

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