The News Courier in Athens, Alabama

Sports

March 28, 2014

Florida, Dayton advance to Elite Eight

(Continued)

The Gators promise they won't take Dayton lightly.

"They've earned their spot here just as we have," Young said. "We're going to respect them, just as much as they respect us. We know they're a good team. If they're here, they are going to be one of the eight teams left."

Dayton advanced by blasting past No. 10 Stanford for an 82-72 victory a few hours earlier. The Flyers used 12 players in the first half — sending seemingly endless waves of blue and red onto the court — to slowly grind Stanford down.

Jordan Sibert led the Flyers with 18 points, while freshman Kendall Pollard came off the bench to add a career-high 12 on 5-of-6 shooting from the field.

Dayton's deep bench outscored Stanford's 34-2. The Flyers are in the Elite Eight for the first time since 1984. Stanford (23-13) fought foul trouble all night and was led by Chasson Randle's 21 points.

"We had 11 guys score in the game and from top to bottom, we kept coming and coming," Dayton coach Archie Miller said. "The way they shared the ball and moved the ball ... it was a true team effort. It's nice that on the biggest stage, we acted like ourselves."

It was quite the night for the Miller family. Archie joined his brother in the Elite Eight after Sean Miller coached Arizona to a 70-64 victory over San Diego State.

Beating Florida will be Dayton's toughest assignment yet. The Gators are a veteran team with few weaknesses and a strong desire to put recent tournament disappointments behind them.

But Dayton hasn't shied away from any challenge yet. The Flyers already have dispatched Ohio State, Syracuse and now Stanford.

The last remaining Atlantic 10 school in the bracket keeps chugging along.

"We're known right now throughout the nation as the 'Cinderella team,' but we really believe that we are an elite team and we can compete with anyone in the country," Dayton forward Dyshawn Pierre said.

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