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Valparaiso upsets Loyola-Chicago in wild OT finish; top 2 seeds eliminated in MVC Tournament before semifinals


No. 7-seed Valparaiso erased an 18-point deficit and knocked off No. 2-seed Loyola-Chicago 74-73 in overtime Friday in the Missouri Valley Conference Tournament. It’s the Crusaders’ first-ever trip to the MVC semifinals.

Valpo trailed 73-72 when Eron Gordon made what would serve as the game-winning layup — off a great pass from John Kiser — with 3.2 seconds remaining.

Earlier on Thursday, No. 8-seed Drake pulled off an even bigger upset against No. 1 seed Northern Iowa, and did so in shocking blowout fashion by the score of 77-56 (Northern Iowa was a 9.5-point favorite).

The loss is devastating for Northern Iowa’s at-large chances for the NCAA Tournament (the Panthers are 25-6, witha KenPom ranking of 49th).

Drake will take on No. 4-seed Bradley in the semifinals, while Valpo will take on the winner of Friday night’s Indiana State (3)-Missouri State (6) game.

March Madness is in full swing in the Valley.

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