Cats survive Houston, advance to Elite Eight

Coach John Calipari questions a call in Kentucky’s loss to Auburn

Remember, nobody was expecting Washington to contribute much in this game, but now, with Washington looking like he has returned to form, Kentucky is once again a devastating team to be reckoned with going forward.

In PJ Washington's first game back since Kentucky's SEC semifinal loss to Tennessee, the Wildcats held on late to beat Houston, 62-58. Auburn announced that Okeke would not return to the game and was being taken for X-rays.

There was a notion this Kentucky team might max out after two rounds of the NCAA Tournament if its star forward Washington didn't come back from a foot injury. It's our jobs to pick him up, lift him up, encourage him, and all we want to do at this point is go out there and play for him. "Kind of started hurting in the second half, but I have to tough through it".

Houston (33-4), in the Sweet 16 for the first time since 1984, used a 17-6 surge to finish a comeback from 13 points down early in the second half.

Kentucky will move on to the Elite 8, facing fifth seed Auburn on Sunday.

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University of North Carolina freshman Nassir Little has had a very good NCAA Tournament so far, scoring 19 points in the win over Iona and then 20 points in the win over Washington in the Midwest Region. Four consecutive free throws gave the Wildcats the lead with just over two minutes left.

With time running down, Washington hit a huge hook shot, and Kentucky's defense got a timely stop to firmly end Houston's season.

His status was a mystery right up until the first media timeout, when he entered to a standing ovation from fans behind the Kentucky bench. Bryce Brown and Danjel Purifoy each added 12 points and Samir Doughty and J'Von McCormick each had 10 points to round out the group of double-digit scorers for Auburn in the win.

Chuma Okeke's sophomore season is over.

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