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Sunday’s Matchups to Watch in the N.C.A.A. Tournament

by News Desk

Sunday will be a sweet day for half the teams playing, as the winners of these N.C.A.A. tournament games will secure their spots in the round of 16. Follow along with the bracket and live scores, and check out our picks for the games we don’t want to miss (teams organized by seed; all times Eastern):

Men’s Tournament

12:10 p.m., CBS

Xavier seemed asleep for most of its first-round game against No. 14-seeded Kennesaw State. The Musketeers trailed by 13 with just under 10 minutes to play before finally waking up; they scored the next 15 points and held on for a 72-67 win. Pitt narrowly escaped its play-in game against Mississippi State to make the field of 64, but it had no such trouble against No. 6-seeded Iowa State. The Panthers opened the game on a 22-4 run and held the Cyclones to just 23.3 percent shooting in the 59-41 win. They’ll look to follow in the footsteps of two other 11th-seeded teams that started in the First Four and made the Final Four: V.C.U. in 2011 and U.C.L.A. in 2021.

2:40 p.m., CBS

Things weren’t quite as easy for Kansas State on Friday as the team might have liked, with No. 14-seeded Montana State hanging around until the final few minutes. But ultimately, the combination of forward Keyontae Johnson (18 points, 8 rebounds) and Markquis Nowell (17 points, 14 assists) was too much to overcome. It also took Kentucky some time in its matchup with No. 11-seeded Providence to gain control, but the squad had something the Friars didn’t: Oscar Tshiebwe. The senior forward grabbed 25 rebounds in Kentucky’s 61-53 win, setting up this all-Wildcat meeting in the second round.

5:15 p.m., CBS

Marquette used a balanced offensive attack in its first-round game to dispatch No. 15-seeded Vermont, 78-61, with five players in double figures. The win was the first in the N.C.A.A. tournament for the Golden Eagles since 2013, when they reached the round of 8. Michigan State’s win on Friday over No. 10-seeded Southern California was its 15th in that same period, in which the Spartans went to two Final Fours (though didn’t win a game in either one). Michigan State lost an early lead against the Trojans but recovered for a 72-62 win.

7:45 p.m., TruTV

After Fairleigh Dickinson’s stunning upset of Purdue, a No. 1 seed, we’ve been soaking up information about the school in Teaneck, N.J. The Knights won only four games last season and didn’t win their conference tournament this year; they needed to win a First Four game before they even had a chance to face Purdue; they’re the shortest team in Division I. But no matter: F.D.U. owns the second win by a No. 16 seed over a No. 1 seed in men’s tournament history, and now it has a chance to get further than any 16 seed ever has. Standing in its way is Florida Atlantic, which survived a back-and-forth game against Memphis by hitting the go-ahead basket with 2.5 seconds left.

Women’s Tournament

3:30 p.m., ESPN

Mississippi State built on its win in the First Four with an 81-66 defeat of No. 6 Creighton. The Bulldogs were facing a darling from last year’s tournament, but they took control early and became the lowest seed to win on Friday. Notre Dame also got out to a hot start, scoring the first 16 points in its 82-56 win over Southern Utah. The Fighting Irish will be without their star point guard, Olivia Miles, for the rest of the tournament because of a knee injury, but they had plenty of contributions in their first-round game: Lauren Ebo posted a double-double, with 14 points and 10 rebounds, and Maddy Westbeld scored 20 points.

5:30 p.m., ESPN

Maryland made light work of No. 15-seeded Holy Cross in the first round, jumping out to a 23-4 start en route to the 93-61 victory. The Terrapins got double-digit scoring efforts from five players, led by 18 off the bench from guard Brinae Alexander. Arizona Coach Adia Barnes has her team back in the round of 32 for the third consecutive year after a 75-62 win over West Virginia on Friday. Cate Reese scored 25, and Esmery Martinez had 13 points and 12 rebounds playing against her former team. The Wildcats lost last year in the second round, but the year before, they made it to the Final Four.

7 p.m., ESPN2

Princeton needed nearly every second of Friday’s game to pull off the upset. The Tigers got a 3-pointer from Grace Stone with 4.7 seconds left to complete their comeback win over seventh-seeded North Carolina State, which was held without a point for the final 5:43 of the game. Princeton has made the round of 32 for the second consecutive year. It will face Utah, which hit the century mark Friday in a 103-77 win over Gardner-Webb. The Utes were led by forward Alissa Pili’s 33 points, a career high for the transfer from Southern California.

7:30 p.m., ESPN

L.S.U. took a while to jell offensively it its 73-50 win over 14th-seeded Hawaii on Friday, but even cold shooting couldn’t slow down the Tigers. Forward Angel Reese scored 34 points and added 15 rebounds for her 29th double-double on the season. Michigan was hot out of the gate in its first-round game against U.N.L.V., leading 17-9 after the first quarter. Forward Emily Kiser and guard Maddie Nolan each had 18 points for the Wolverines, while guard Leigha Brown poured in 17.

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