Florida State will play No. 4-seeded Gonzaga on Thursday night in Los Angeles. P.J. Savoy gave FSU the lead to stay when he knocked down a three-pointer from the wing for a 71-70 lead with 1:08 remaining.
Xavier's chance to tie came up empty when Kanter air-balled a 3-point attempt with seven seconds remaining. FSU shot 43 percent to Xavier's 47 from the field, but forced 18 turnovers in the win. From there, the Bulls took control and were able to maintain a double digit lead for the remainder of the game.
Syracuse took advantage of ice-cold shooting by Michigan State, which missed their last 14 shots from the field, to advance to the Sweet 16 with a 55-53 over the third-seeded Spartans. Summer Hemphill added 17 points and 11 rebounds, Cassie Oursler chipped in with 12 points and seven rebounds while Katherine Ups ended with 11 points.
With the win, the Seminoles will advance to the Sweet 16 for the first time since 2011. Florida State is 72 with 37.8 boards a night while they rank 80 by dishing out 15.1 assists per contest. The Seminoles withstood the runs, made enough shots and celebrated the fifth Sweet 16 appearance in program history. Star guard Trevon Bluiett didn't score his first field goal until the 13-minute mark of the second half and finished with just eight points on 2-of-8 shooting.
Paul Scruggs was fouled driving for a layup with 1:49 left and made both of his free throws before Savoy made his game-winning bucket. In 19 minutes, she collected 26 points, 4 rebounds and 3 steals with 1 turnovers.
On the season, Xavier basketball averages 84.5 points, 38.1 rebounds and 16.7 assists per game.
T.J. Starks scored 21 points and the No. 7 seed Aggies (22-12) manhandled the second-seeded Tar Heels.
Macura and Bluiett had to go to the bench in the first half with two early fouls, but Xavier led at halftime 34-32 despite missing nine of its last 10 shots.
Xavier coach Chris Mack had four starters back from that team that wound up losing to Gonzaga in the Elite Eight, and Florida State coach Leonard Hamilton lost his top three scorers - two to the NBA Draft.
Florida State came up with a gritty showing in the final 10 minutes of the second half to oust Xavier but they had help.
"I think we were more connected as a team [this year]", Hamilton told TNT after the game.
Florida State had more second-chance points with 14, compared to Arkansas-Little Rock's 5. They're a very good defensive team.